USS BASTET - Mission 11
Cat Fight
Post # Character Title
001 A'Janni The Last of His Pride
A'Janni helps the Grand Duke to escape
002 Gemma Code Black
The BASTET responds to a Priority Black emergency
003 Mitshiba What's In The Box
Aki tries to figure out what is in the box Krayss has
004 Iverson A Quick History Lesson
A'Janni gives Selene a quick review of the situation
005 Andersson Patient vs Patience
Sofia deals with the Grand Duke's injuries
006 Mitshiba The OGRAAM
Aki researches the item known as OGRAAM
007 Valentine Cats Have feelings Too
Sarena and A'Janni share a moment in the Mess hall
008 A'Janni Failed Protector
A'Janni and Sarena talk in the Mess Hall
009 Gemma Something Broken
In Engineering, Gemma's personalities surface
010 Andersson Healing The Healer
Nic tells Sofia they are heading for OLTHAR PRIME
011 Dima Picking Up The Pieces
Nic goes to see Selene on the bridge
012 Iverson Why? Why Not?
Selene meets Gwenvel for the first time
013 Fairborn Like Waves On A Beach
Elan and Amber receive a call from the BASTET
014 Valentine Light-Footed
Sarena has a chat with A'Janni and Gemma
015 Andersson Business Breakfast
Sofia and Nic have breakfast in he Mess Hall
016 A'Janni What Must Be Done
A'Janni beams down to OLTHAR PRIME
017 Fairborn When The Universe...
Elan makes a decision
018 Valentine Plan Of Action
Sarena speaks with Selene
019 Mitshiba Back and Forth
Aki scans the KZINTI system and finds some oddities
020 Gemma Identity Crissis
Gemma discovers someting about the OGRAAM
021 Andersson From Peace to Chaos
Sofia is called back to the Infirmary
022 Valentine Figuring Things Out
The staff meets to figure things out
023 Fairborn The Curse of Knowledge
Amber helps Sheetora
024 Andersson Adapting
Nic and Sofia talk about Amber and Gemma
025 Valentine A Matter of Pride
Krayss agrees to help Gemma
026 Gemma Fraudulent Authenticity
Gemma solidifies her Sheetora identity
Post # Character Title
027 Andersson Queen's Gambit
Nicole and Sofia talk about Gemma
028 A'Janni Unlikely Allies
A'Janni evaluates the situation he is in
029 Dima Origin Stories
Aki and Nic talk about Gemma
030 Fairborn A Universe of Wonder
Elan thinks back to his discussions with Amber
031 Valentine Unsettling Feelings
Sarena and Selene help create a massive distraction
032 A'Janni Royal Rumble
The away team fights its way through the palace
033 Gemma Another Life
Sheetora and Elan talk about markings on the walls
034 Fairborn One Word
Elan is left alone with Sheetora, lookin at markings
035 Iverson Time For Answers
The BASTET senior officers discus what happened
036 Gemma Another Time
Sheetora wakes up in a different place and time
037 Mitshiba Where To Start
Aki feels overwhelmed by the task at hand
038 Dima Revelations
Nicole goes to speak to Amber once more
039 A'Janni Outsiders
A'Janni meets someone unexpected
040 Fairborn Timely Realization
Elan meets Merevaik
041 Valentine Temporal Logic
The BASTET travels back in time
042 Gemma Another Story
Sheetora meets Queen Reelana
043 Mitshiba Without A Trace
Aki is still unable to locate the away team
044 Fairborn Time To Talk
Merevaik frees Elan from his cage
045 Gemma Past Future
Sheetoa and Krayss work on a course of action
046 A'Janni Houdini Switch
Merevaik speaks with A'Janni
047 Valentine Searching for the Unseen
The bridge crew discuss their lack of findings
048 Andersson Not The Time to be...
Merevaik speaks with A'Janni
049 Iverson Full Circle, part 1
The BASTET waits for something to happen
050 A'Janni Cat Nap
A'Janni watches over Sheetora as she sleeps
051 Gemma False Trickery
Sheetora is made to question her own identity
052 Iverson Full Circle, part 2
Things get heated as the team returns
M11-P001: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34064.1130 ("The Last of His Pride")
"The Last of His Pride"
[previous (ANU) "The List" / (BAS) "Unexpected Twist"]]

Setting: Space, the far side of the third moon orbiting KZINTI BETA
Stardate: 34064.1130 

The small powered-down civilian runabout looked as if it had recently been abandoned. The gentle gravitational pool of the small moon it was in close orbit to was the only thing keeping the craft from floating out into space and being seen by the three much larger Kzinti warships frantically searching the main planet. Although nothing was known about the situation that brought this into existence, it was not hard to see that something important had taken place, something that involved the small craft and its occupant in some way terrible way.

Setting: Kzinti Civilian Runabout
Stardate: 34064.1135  

"Stay still," the Caitian security officer whispered with force at the wounded Kzinti man stretched out on the floor of the small craft. All power was turned off to avoid detection, but this was only a temporary measure as they both knew how determined those looking for them were. "Please Grand Duke, I beg of you, remain still. I cannot take care of you and avoid us being detected at the same time," A'Janni said. It was easy to imagine, because of his size and muscular physical, that begging was not something the Caitian normally did, but there was nothing normal about any of this.

"We have to go back," Krayss, a well dressed Kzinti nobleman said before coughing up blood showing just how severe his injuries were. "We have to go back and save them."

A'Janni closed his one good eye, the other having been sealed shut for almost a full decade ago following his taking part in a mission to rescue the kidnapped daughter of a high ranking diplomat. That mission was a complete success that saw the young woman return home safe and sound. Today, things had not gone the same way as he thought back to what the Caitian considered to be a complete and utter failure. The entire royal family of KZINTI ALPHA was dead; the King, the Queen, and their 14 children were all brutally murdered in the middle of the night along with any member of the royal court who happened to be staying in the palace. The attack proved to be as ruthless as it was fatal, sparing no one in its path with one single exception, the Grand Duke. Unable to sleep, he went to the main terrace to gaze at the stars and by doing so avoided the perfectly choreographed massacre. By the time he realized what was happening, it was already too late as the palace was engulfed in flames forcing him to leap three stories down to were more assassins waited, just in case someone managed to escape.

By the time the Federation Special Security Envoy sent to ensure the safety of the royal family joined him, the Grand Duke had already dispatched several of the would-be assassins, but not before seeing a spear forced through his right flank. All that A'Janni could do was to get Krayss to safety, but not before they managed to retrieve one special item, a royal artifact that was now locked away in a box sitting next to the wounded Kzinti nobleman.

A'Janni reopened his eye and gazed down upon the sole survivor of the Kzinti Royal Court. "We cannot go back, even if there are survivors, which I doubt, we would not live to see us land on the planet, let alone stepping anywhere near the palace. We need to escape first and bring back reinforcements."

"We have to go back... we have to save Sheetora." The Grand Duke pleaded as a few tears escaped as he called out the Queen's name. Not only was she the mate of their King and ruler, but she was also Krayss' sister, which explained why he was so driven to returning to the planet and doing everything he could to save her. What pained him the most was that deep down inside the nobleman knew that her fate had been no different than that of her husband and children.

"We will return," A'Janni promised in a low growl. "For her sake and memory... for all of their sakes and memories... we will return." Once the Caitian was sure that the Kzinti was secured and his wound dressed as best as time and resources allowed, he slid back into the pilot's seat and restored power to the craft. Seconds later, the runabout vanished as it escaped at maximum warp speed with two of the three Kzinti warships quickly following behind.

Setting: Space, FTL
Stardate: 34064.1200

It did not take the warships long to catch up to the small craft trying to escape them. The runabout's engines were no match for those of the Kzinti military ships and it would not take their weapons long to erase the one and only mistake they allowed when the Grand Duke escape KZINTI ALPHA and sought refuge on its sister planet.

Just as the warships reached optimal firing range, something was ejected from the escaping runabout. It was something small, appearing almost square in shape, something that very much looked like a compact warp core normally found inside this type of craft. Seconds later, a powerful explosion confirmed what the small item was, taking out the closest warship and sending enough debris flying back towards the second to force it out of warp speed. Of course, without its core, the runabout did not remain at faster-than-light velocity for long, but it was enough to make sure that the crippled warship would not be a threat, at least for the immediate future.

Setting: Kzinti Civilian Runabout
Stardate: 34064.1210

"You have doomed us both," Krayss hissed through the pain his deep wound was inflicting on him.

"They would have easily killed us," A'Janni said. "We were no match for their weapons. Now, one of the warships has been destroyed while the other has been forced out of warp speed, which gives us some time."

"By only damaging the second ship, you gave them the opportunity to contact the third, and it will be upon us very quickly to finish the job, and without a warp core, we are just here waiting for the end to come," the Kzinti nobleman said, his pain gradually morphing into anger.

"We have a little bit of time," the Caitian Security Officer said. "That is more than we had, and it is all that we need," he added before opening an encoded transmission channel. "This is Lieutenant A'Janni sending out a priority black emergency signal to any ships able to receive this transmission. I repeat, this is a priority *black* emergency signal. We require immediate and urgent assistance. Our ship has lost warp capacity and we are no match to fight those pursuing us. We are in urgent need of assistance. This is a priority black emergency signal," he said before closing the channel and whispering to himself. "Please, somebody, anybody, we need help."

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P002: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34064.1215 ("Code Black")
"Code Black"
[the previous post was (ANU) "The List" / (BAS) "The Last of His Pride"]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34064.1215

Although the BASTET was more than half a day away from the nearest communication relay, Gemma was monitoring all channels. The Captain wanted the ILO on the bridge, and Gemma was not one to just sit around waiting for something to happen. Survival depended on being prepared, on acting before it was required. Maybe that was the reasoning behind Iverson's request. Whatever the reason was, it no longer mattered. An emergency transmission had been detected and she was the one taking care of it.

Gemma quickly confirmed the security codes attached to the transmission. The originator of the priority Black was an operative of NEW ALEXANDRIA. More important, they were in dire trouble as this code was only to be used in extreme cases. The main reason for this was that a Code Black was transmitted on a special frequency. It traveled further than normal signals but could easily be traced back to its source. With the emotional warmth of a Vulcan frozen in ice the ILO spoke. "Captain, we are receiving a priority Black emergency signal."

Both the CO and ExO turned to look at the ILO, speaking as one. "Priority black?"

"The main frequency is Kzinti, but the embedded code is ours." Gemma had dealt with such a situation only once before. The problem was that she got there too late, a mistake that she did not intend to repeat. "We have an Intel operative in urgent need, and he is not alone."

"How can you be certain of this?" Misaki asked.

"The transmission clearly states that 'We require immediate and urgent assistance'," Gemma replied. "Which makes sense as a priority black is not to be used by an operative for themselves. We are expected to die before asking for help," the ILO added.

"You just have to love the thankless field we are in," the ExO said rolling her eyes.

"We better get going," Iverson said giving the ExO a quick nod of her head.

Valentine immediately rushed to the tactical station. "RED ALERT!" The lights reflecting alert condition came on, plunging the bridge in a red hue.

"Gemma, transfer the source coordinates of the transmission to the helm. Helm, maximum emergency speed to those coordinates. Use the quantum slip-drive to get us as close as possible then engage warp engines." Cpt. Iverson and Cmdr. Valentine seemed to both be on the same page. Someone was in trouble and they would do everything possible to help. In a matter of seconds, the BASTET had changed course and was rushing in to respond to the call for help. With the ship on its way, the Captain rose from her chair and approached the ILO. "Do we have any information on who sent this priority black signal?"

"The information in our computer system is at least two months out of date," the ILO said. "That said, there is a record of a Caitian special security Envoy to KZINTI ALPHA by the name of A'Janni."

"Makes sense," the ExO said. "A Caitian would be able to pass almost unnoticed amongst the Kzinti."

One of Gemma's eyebrow perked up as she read the information on the officer. "According to his profile, I doubt that he would be able to be unnoticed anywhere he goes. At 6'4" and 320 lbs, this A'Janni would be hard to miss."

"That is one big cat," Lt. Mitshiba said from the science station.

"As a special security envoy to the royal family, his size was clearly believed to be an asset. Something terrible must have happened for him to initiate a priority black emergency." people could see that this whole affair was bothering the ILO. However fast they were responding was not quick enough for her liking.

The conversion shifted when Cmdr. Valentine jumped in. "Long-range sensors are picking up a Kzinti warship also on an intercept course. We should get there about 30 seconds or so before them."

"That is not a lot of time for us to act," the Captain said. "Especially when we do not know the exact nature of the situation.

Gemma met Selene's eyes straight on. "With all due respect, we know all that we need to know. One of our Intel operatives has issued a priority black. This means we are to help in whatever way we can. Admiral Koniki did not make this an option, hence why it is so rarely used. Whatever cover this A'Janni was under no longer matters. Whatever mission we were on is on hold until the priority black is dealt with. Our task is clear, we are to get there and rescue him."

"You really think it's that simple?" the Captain asked.

The ILO nodded. "I do."

"Alright, guess we will be performing a near-warp transport. That is the only way we can comply with the priority black without getting involved in the situation. Gemma, head to the transporter room and oversee the rescue. Misaki, you are in charge of the sensors. We have a very tight window to work in and there will not be any room for mistakes." The Captain pressed her communicator before continuing. "Iverson to Dr. Andersson. Stand by to receive potential wounded."

=/\= Potential? What does that mean? =/\=

"It means that we have no idea what exactly we are heading into. All we know is that we are responding to a priority black emergency."

=/\= Priority black? =/\= This time it was Nicole who chimed in.

"No time to explain, just be ready." Following this, the Captian gave the okay to the ILO to leave the bridge which she immediately did.

Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room 1
Stardate: 34064.1220

Gemma stood at the control station, her fingers hovering over the panel. She truly believed what she said earlier to the Captain. This was a simple deal. All they needed to do was to get there and rescue A'Janni and whoever was with him.

=/\= Misaki to Gemma, stand by. We will be dropping out of warp speed in 25 seconds. Good news is that the quantum slip-stream drive got us there faster than anticipated. We have just over 40 seconds to beam them on board the BASTET. Looks like the crew of the HAWKING did a really good job of repairing our systems. =/\=

The ILO looked down at the chronometer. There were 20 seconds left before they dropped out of warp speed. Then, they would have 40 seconds to get a lock on A'Janni and the others, to beam them on board and for the BASTET to warp away. It would be plenty of time.

Gemma carefully kept watch on the passage of time as shown on the chronometer. Every second was an eternity of its own. The ILO's reflexes were primed and ready as only her nanites could make them be. To give her 40 seconds might as well have been hours to do something that required on a few moments. As long as the ship got there first, the rescue itself would not be an issue.  The countdown was now in the single digits, working its way down to nothingness.

=/\= Dropping out of warp speed... now! =/\= Mitshiba announced. =/\= Sensors are picking up two life forms onboard a civilian Kzinti runabout. =/\=

"Already have a lock on them," Gemma said. To be honest she was expecting there to be several dozen people, not just two. Whoever was accompanying A'Janni had to be someone special. Why else trigger a priority black? "Initializing transport."

The transporter platform came to life and soon after two figures appeared. The Kzinti male was clearly injured while the imposing Caitain just appeared relieved.  "He is hurt, do you have a medial team on standby?" A'Janni was barely off the platform when the transporter was re-engaged sending the injured man to sickbay.

"I am Lt. Gemma," the ILO said introducing herself. "You are on board the USS BASTET."

The imposing white-furred Caitain smiled. "Of course, the temporal ship. That explains how you were able to get to me so quickly."

"It does not work that way," Gemma said rolling her eyes and shaking her head. "We just happen to be nearby. If you would follow me, I am sure that captain Iverson will want an explanation. You did call for a priority black, apparently for a single individual. The Captain will want to know why."

"He's the only one left," the Caitain said as a weight of great sadness came crashing down upon his shoulders. "Everyone else is dead."

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P003: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 34064.1230 ("What's In The Box")
"What's In The Box"
Previous posts: (ANU) "A Friendly Chat" & (BAS) "Code Black"

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34064.1230

With the small craft's Caitian pilot speaking with the Captain in her Ready Room and the injured Kzinti passenger being taken care of by the Doctor in the infirmary, the Asian scientist was left to look over some of the data collected during the brief but successful rescue.  The runabout's logs and sensor records were downloaded just before the BASTET jumped back to warp leaving the disabled vessel and the pursuing Kzinti warship as far behind as possible.

In hindsight, the BASTET could have engaged its temporal drive giving them all of the time in the world to deal with the situation, but Aki understood all too well the risks that doing this might cause. If the Kzinti picked up any sort of temporal field residue when they arrived, they would be sure to start looking a lot closer into what had taken place, and that might risk the ship and its involvement to be discovered. Right now, all they had to go on was that there was another warp trail meaning that those on board the runabout had gone to another ship of unknown origin, classification, capabilities or intents. That could prove enough to have them drop their pursuit, that was depending on the reason as to why they were giving chase in the first place.

According to the runabout's sensor logs, the craft left KZINTI ALPHA and rushed at maximum speed to KZINTI BETA where they were forced to hide behind one of the moons after noticing that three warships were in pursuit. Unfortunately, there was little else the sensor data could provide about what happened before, thus keeping the aura of mystery about this situation intact. What further added to the intrigue were their transporter records indicating that a box had been beamed alongside the injured Kzinti. Due to the urgency called for by the priority black emergency, security protocols were temporarily suspended allowing for the item to be beamed aboard, this despite sensors being unable to scan inside the container. Soon after their arrival on board the BASTET, both the Kzinti and his box were beamed to the Infirmary where they currently were.

What could have been so important for the Kzinti to hold on to it with such fervor even after being so badly wounded? Could the box and its content be so important as to be responsible for the two cat-like men running for their lives the way they were? Could the content of this mysterious, sensors-shielded box be the reason why three warships had been after them?

Commander Valentine was notified about the presence of the container which meant that it was no longer the responsibility of the CSciO, but being the curious type, Aki could not help but try to get some answers through whatever means she could.  Internal sensors still could not penetrate the container and reveal what was inside, but the Asian Scientist was able to identify a particular emblem on the box. A quick computer search revealed that the emblem was that of the royal family of Kizinti ALPHA, more specifically the division responsible for the maintaining the historical archive of the family over the generations since their ascension to power some thousand years ago.

This discovery did not help in anyway ease Aki's curiosity; in fact, it had quite the opposite effect. Why would three Kzinti warships be sent after a man carrying a box presumed to hold nothing more than the historical records of a single family? True, this was not an ordinary family, but still it did seem to be a little strange to have one man nearly killed for a box while another called for a priority black emergency in order to save that first man's life. Clearly, there was something more to this story, something that as of this moment was well beyond the reach and understanding of the CSciO.

In an effort to better understand what was happening, Aki started listening to whatever communications were coming from KZINTI ALPHA and BETA. To her great surprise and sorrow, she found that both planets had gone completely dark, not a single signal coming from either world. The discovery was quickly reported to their ILO which again meant that this was no longer the concern of the CSciO who was left with the same mystery she had started with.

Aki poured over all of the sensors data she had access to; starting with the data lifted from the runabout to the latest internal sensors scans. Nothing new was discovered leaving the Asian Scientist feeling very disappointed as well as a little upset.  "I am not asking for much, am I?" She asked not addressing anyone in particular.  "All I want is to know is what's inside that container, is that really asking for too much? He held on to it through thick and thin, even after being mortally wounded. The emblem is that of the royal family's historical archive, which obviously means something, but what? All I want to know is what's inside.  WHAT'S IN THE BOX?"

Realizing that she was sounding like a crazy woman, Aki quickly focussed back on her work and station, keeping as best she could any further questions to herself.

Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
M11-P004: USS BASTET: Iverson: 34064.1235 ("A Quick History Lesson")
"A Quick History Lesson"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Who Is Rilliz" / (BAS) "What's In The Box")

Setting: USS BASTET, Ready Room
Stardate: 34064.1235

Captain Iverson sat behind her desk, attentively listening to the story told by A'Janni while keeping an eye on the reactions of her Intelligence Liaison Officer who stood out of his sight behind the Caitian. Selene knew very well how things went in the world of Intel, and given that a priority black had been called by the mountain of a beast that was before her, the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET wanted to make sure that no details were missed or omitted.

By the sounds of it though, missing or omitted details would not be an issue with the report from the Caitain Security Special Envoy. Captain Iverson was given a brief yet elaborate history on the Kzinti as A'Janni went on to explain how the people of KZIN had split into three separate and distinct societies soon after joining the Federation. Those who left their home world re-established themselves on the nearby habitable planets within the KZINTI Star System. From that day forth, the world of origin was unofficially referred to as KZINTI PRIME while the other two planets took on the designations of KZINTI ALPHA and KZINTI BETA.

The society that remained on KZINTI PRIME continued to fall under the ruling of their planetary council overseen by the High KZIN, but things were very different on the two newly transplanted civilizations. On KZINTI ALPHA, it was a family who took on the burden of leadership establishing a ruling monarchy with a King responsible for maintaining peace and prosperity throughout the land. On KZINTI BETA, things were a little less organized as the one in charge of ruling the planet was the latest Clan Leader to fight and win his way to earn the right to sit on the elevated fur-covered throne.

Lieutenant A'Janni went on to explain that Admiral Koniki had sent him to KZINTI ALPHA almost six months ago to help ensure the safety of the King and his family as rumors of a possible assassination attempt had been intercepted by Intel assets in the region. The Caitian was specifically selected for this mission because of his appearance, making it easier for him to be accepted by the ruling family and those within the royal court. After a few months, the Special Security Envoy began to believe that the Intel was wrong as nothing happened, the daily routine of life in the palace was as uneventful as could have been expected. That all changed yesterday when an unprecedented assault on the palace took place from within. Whatever plan to assassinate the King was only the tip of the proverbial iceberg as the entire royal family as well as anyone who supported them were targeted all in a single swift attack that claimed the lives of everyone with only one exception, Grand Duke Krayss.

"He is the last of the royal court of KZINTI ALPHA," A'Janni said, the Caitian doing his best to control his emotions as he spoke. "More important, he carries with him the OGRAAM."

"The OGRAAM?" Selene repeated not sure what the name was supposed to mean if anything. Her knowledge of the KZINTI was basic at best and dealt more with the way of life on KZINTI PRIME and not one of the two offshoot civilizations.

"It would take some time to explain, and I doubt that I would be able to do it justice," the Caitian stated. "What I can tell you is that the OGRAAM stands for Official Genetic Records and Archives Matrix."

"A glorified memory storage device?" Gemma said, not at all sounding impressed.

"It is much more than that," A'Janni explained. "The robot was entrusted with keeping the genetic records of all members of the royal family since the day they rose to power and claimed the planet as their own. It is also responsible for keeping a record of every event that took place. I guess that whoever attacked the royal court wants OGRAAM because it has a record of what happened on the planet and might even be able to identify who is responsible for organizing this massacre."

"If the records can be proven to be authentic, it would rally the population against whoever tried to claim the throne," the Intelligence Liaison Officer sighed.

"There is another theory as to why they were after the OGRAAM," the Caitian continued. "Since it keeps a genetic record of the entire bloodline, it could be used to locate the next rightful heir to the throne, allowing whoever organized this to find and manipulate this individual in order to place a puppet on the throne giving them easy control over an entire world."

"Sounds like a lot of trouble, even for someone who wants to lay claim to an entire world," Captain Iverson said while glancing at Gemma.

"A very long and demanding plan that would have required a great deal of preparation and organization to even begin to put into motion," the Intel Operative said. "That they were able to do so without anyone knowing what they were planning also indicates a deep network hidden in the shadows to bring all of the intricate pieces together at the right time."

"Does it sound familiar to you?" Selene asked of Gemma who unhappily nodded her head in agreement. Turning back to look at A'Janni, the Captain continued. "What would you have us do next? You were the one to call for a priority black, so I can only guess that you have a plan."

"I do not," the Caitian admitted. "My only goal was to save the Grand Duke. The wound he suffered during his escape would have killed most humanoids, but thanks to Kzinti physiology, he survived, but I knew that the damage was too extensive for me to be able to do anything to stop the inevitable. He needed urgent medical care, that is why I am so grateful that you were there to help us."

"All right, we will start with that, helping him get back to his feet," the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET said as she rose from her chair. "I am guessing that you will not accept my offer for you to rest in whatever guest quarters we can provide, as modest as they may be. This is not a luxury starliner and certainly not a Kzinti royal palace."

"I appreciate the offer Captain, but if you would not mind, I would prefer to be by the side of the Grand Duke. I know that there is nothing I can do, but being near him will help me likely more than any rest would."

"Loyal to the end," Selene noted. "This Grand Duke Krayss must be someone very special to you."

"Actually, we only spoke on occasions, rarely spending any time together, but he is the last member of the family I was sent to protect and right now he is all that stands between me and having completely failed in my mission."

"I can understand that," the Captain said before turning to the Intel Operative. "Lieutenant Gemma, please escort our guest to the Infirmary once there you can relay what we have learned to Commander Valentine. I will stay on the bridge and coordinate with Lieutenant Mitshiba as to our next course of action."

"As you wish, Captain," Gemma said inviting the imposing walking mountain of fur to exit the Ready Room first.

As soon as A'Janni and Gemma left, Selene followed and made her way straight to Misaki. "I need you to do some research on something called an OGRAAM," the Captain instructed. "Apparently it was brought on board by the injured Grand Duke and according to our Caitian friend, it is a device used by the royal family of KZINTI ALPHA to record and archive everything about their lineage and history. I am not sure if he told us everything he knows, but I am sure that there is more to this thing then we were told. Let me know if you find anything, I need to get a better idea of the tactical situation we just rushed into and try to figure out what our next move will be."

"Of course Captain, I will see what I can find right away," the Chief Science Officer said as the Captain returned to her ready room. At least this way Misaki might actually figure out what was in the box brought onboard by the Grand Duke

Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer


Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M11-P005: USS BASTET: Andersson: 34064.1300 ("Patient vs Patience")
"Patient vs Patience"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Who is Rilliz?" by Sarah / (BAS) "A Quick History Lesson" by Jessica]

Setting: BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34064.1300

The injury was severe; large enough for her to put her arm clean through the man's side. Whatever weapon was used to inflict the level of damage was efficient if not barbarically primitive, ripping through everything in its path with the intent of inflicting as much pain as possible.  That was why Sofia was amazed that the Kzinti had survived this long. Anyone else would have died long before the BASTET could respond to the call for help, well maybe not Gemma thanks to her nanites, and likely, a Klingon would have also managed to not succumb to the pain and loss of blood caused by the gaping hole she was trying to mend. The more she worked on her patient, the longer the list of individuals and races who could have survived this particular injury became making the physician realize just how fragile most humanoid races were in comparison.

The sound of the doors to the Infirmary hissing open and close drew the woman's curiosity for a few seconds, just long enough for the Doctor to realize that her audience had become larger by two. Sofia rolled her eyes and took in a deep breath. Maybe upon their return to NEW ALEXANDRIA, if they ever did make it back, the CMO could request a redesign of the Infirmary, one that included an operation theater. At least that way there would be a protective barrier standing between those too curious to stay out and those whose life literally rested in her hands.

Knowing that her frustration would be wasted on Commander Valentine who had been there since the very beginning and Gemma who had just walked in, Doctor Andersson instead focused on the one person who would be the least likely to give her a hard time. "I understand that this thing is important to you, but it would make it a lot easier for me if you could just let go of it. I promise I will have it on the table right there in view the entire time."

"If you want the OGRAAM, you will have to pry it from my dead, cold fingers," the Kzinti growled, wincing in pain as he did so.

"You appear to be missing the fact that I am the one trying to save your life here," Sofia shot back. "Your physiology may be very impressive, as noted by the fact that you are still alive after having something rip a hole right through your side."

"It was a Kzinti Battle Lance," the Caitian clarified in order to set the record straight while at the same time informing his ward that he was here, in the Infirmary with him.

"The serrated edges are designed to inflict a maximum amount of damage, both on the initial thrust in and on the pull-back, making use of the wielder's strength which for a Kzinti is quite remarkable," Gemma added. Oddly enough, the fact that the ILO knew the specifics of the mentioned weapon did not surprise Sofia.  "Doctor, it might be a good idea for you to scan for some sort of nerve agent, the warriors from KZINTI BETA employ such substance to cause a sudden shot of pain when the chemicals wear off."

"Thank you, Gemma," the physician sarcastically hissed. "Last time I checked, I was still the CMO on board this boat, which means that I know what I am doing. We ran a complete biochemical screen on him upon his arrival and there were no traces of any nerve agent in his system."

"It was only a suggestion," the ILO said in her defense, not really appearing as if she needed one though. "We do have a likely suspect as to who might have organized the attack against the royal family. I was just curious to see if they acted themselves, rallied dissatisfied members of the ALPHA society or dragged in people from the BETA colony."

"Relax Doctor," Commander Valentine interjected. "Lt. Gemma is only doing her job, as you are."

"Grand Duke," A'Janni said carefully approaching the operating table. "These people belong to the same organization than I, they came to your rescue and are working to save your life while at the same time trying to understand what happened. I understand and share your pain, but they are here to help us, we can trust them."

Krayss looked at A'Janni through narrowed eyes, silently weighing the words spoken by the man who for all intents and purposes had indeed save his life if not anyone else in the palace. With tangible resistance, the Grand Duke ever so slowly released his unforgiving grip from the box he had been protecting to this point so that he could hand it over to the Caitian.  "You hold the future of my people in your hands, please, do not fail us."

"It's just a box, isn't it?" Sofia mumbled to herself before resuming her work to mend her patient's gaping wound. With the box no longer in the way, Doctor Andersson was able to work with much greater ease, but it also caused an increase in the background whispered voices as Sarena, Gemma, and A'Janni discussed the purpose, workings and general appearance of the item in question.  After several minutes of this, the CMO could no longer contain her feelings.

"Alright, you three," Sofia said glaring at the trio. "I understand that you want to be here and make sure that all went well. I also understand that you wanted to be here because some of you wanted to find out what this thing was," she said pointing to the metallic box now in the hands of the Caitian. "Now you have to understand that in order for me to do my job, I need you three to get out of my Infirmary. He is not going anywhere, and if you want him to be able to get up at some point in the near future, I need to be able to work without having you incessantly whispering over my head or behind my back."

As surprising as the outburst may have been, it proved to be quite effective as all three made their way out of the Infirmary leaving the Doctor to do what she was supposed to. Finally enjoying the perfect stillness she craved, Sofia could not help but hear her own thoughts as she played various scenarios in her mind, most of them ending with Nicole coming to see her and investigate the reasons for the outburst. The more she explored that possibility, the more the CMO had to agree that it would not be such a bad thing as it would give them both an excuse to spend some time alone without being interrupted by anyone else.

Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
M11-P006: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 34064.1400 ("The OGRAAM")
Previous posts: (ANU) "The Biscotti Talks" & (BAS) "Patient vs Patience"

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34064.1400

It took longer than expected for Aki to find any sort of information on the OGRAAM. The reason for this quickly became evident as she scrutinized the details surrounding this revered Kzinti relic as the information appeared on the science monitor. The acronym by which the item was known stood for Official Genetic Records and Archives Matrix, and although the name did suit the item's purpose, it failed to explain the complexity and extent to which it performed its designed task.

The box contained a highly sophisticated genetic scanner that was able to identify the complete genetic makeup of an individual from a simple drop of blood. Once this was accomplished, the device would then compare the data with all others it had gathered since the creation of the Kzinti Royalty on KZINTI ALPHA. According to the information displayed, the device was used to ensure that those claiming to be of 'royal blood' were true to their claim but Aki was certain that there was something more. Any records of a genetic scan would be able to accomplish this, so there was no reason to have a specific machine to do this, especially not one so heavily revered and guarded.  The simple fact that the Grand Duke was so obstinate in letting it go was all the proof the CSciO needed to confirm that the OGRAAM was more than claimed the problem was that there was no way for her to prove it.

Internal sensors could track the device which was now in the hands of the Caitian A'Janni, or was it more accurate to say paws? Aki had never personally dealt with either the Caitian or Kzinti. All she knew about the two feline species was what the Academy's exo-biology and exo-social science classes covered. Now, the CSciO had the perfect opportunity to expand her knowledge thanks to the presence of their latest guests, all she needed to do was to get close to them.

The Grand Duke, for obvious reasons, was out of reach for the time being leaving Aki to monitor the member of the Kzinti Royal court from the bridge while he was being attended to by Doctor Andersson. For completely different reasons, the Caitian and the device that he was now in charge of, was equally out of reach. In theory, the CSciO could go down and talk to him, but she would need to get passed both the First Officer and ILO in order to do so. To be perfectly honest, Mitshiba actually feared Valentine and Gemma more than she did the Caitian, this despite the fact that he was bigger, stronger and simply more menacing in appearance.

"Lt Mitshiba," Captain Iverson said pulling the CSciO out of her thoughts. "Any signs of the ships that were after our guests?"

"Negative, Captain," Aki replied. "The near-warp transport allowed us to leave before they could see anything, and thanks to our hull's special bio-engineering, their sensors would not have been able to get a solid read on us. My guess is that they know something happened to get A'Janni and the Grand Duke off that runabout but there is no way for them to know exactly what it was. It should keep them guessing for a while."

"Good, that should give us more time to figure what it is we have found ourselves dragged into," the Captain said causing the CSciO to look back at her with confusion.

"I thought A'Janni explained it all while in your Ready Room?"

"He explained what happened," Iverson confirmed not sounding overly certain or convinced. "The Royal Palace feel under attack, the entire royal family was murdered and the only survivor is the Grand Duke. As detailed as the explanation was, I cannot help but feel that there is something more to this story."

"Very much like the OGRAAM," Aki noted. "The device is said to be a genetic scanner and record keeper, but a simple medical tricorder with an extended memory module could do that. The way the Grand Duke was protecting the device leads me to believe that it does more than the official records state."

"A'Janni called for a Priority Black Emergency," the Captain noted aloud. "Saving the last surviving member of the Royal Court is just on the edge of being a valid enough reason to do this, but there is something that is just not sitting right with me. We will figure it out, sooner or later, but I am as certain as I can be that there is more to this story. In the meantime, keep digging into this OGRAAM device and report any activities from those warships. The best we can do right now is to stand at the ready and try to figure out the details of this affair."

Aki nodded her head, making it known that she understood the orders and agreed with them. Getting to the bottom of what the OGRAAM truly was would help pull back the veil of mystery that surrounded this unexpected mission, the question was would she be able to find out what needed to be found?

Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
M11-P007: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34064.1430 ("Cats Have Feelings Too")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Cats Have Feelings Too"
[previous post (ANU) "Tracking" / (BAS) "The OGRAAM")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Mess Hall
Stardate: 34064.1430

Captain Iverson was on the bridge with Lt. Mitshiba, the two women likely going through every piece of available information concerning the Kzinti and the strange artifact that the Grand Duke brought on board with him. Not having heard anything to claim otherwise, the Executive Officer believed that Doctor Andersson was still very much busy with her efforts to patch up the heavily injured member of the Kzinti Royal Court. The odds were good that Counselor Dima was there with them, quietly staying out of the way while offering the patient someone to talk to if he so required. Lt. Gemma was back in Engineering, the ILO likely working on a way to ensure that the Kzinti warships that were after the two rescued felinoid men did not locate the BASTET and complete their macabre mission. This left Valentine alone with A'Janni, the two of them sharing a simple and silent drink in the ship's mess hall as neither one of them said a word.

The Caitian was too burdened by the weight of his failure in protecting the Royal family to take part in any sort of discussion while the Executive Officer was too puzzled by the whole affair to speak not knowing where exactly she needed to start. Sarena examined the troubled A'Janni as she brought the glass of cold water to her lips. Everything about this story felt wrong. To have a Caitian Special Security Envoy posted to a Kzinti Royal Court was already strange enough. Yes, the two races were quite similar in appearance but the social structure of their respective societies could not have been more different. Clearly, Admiral Koniki thought it best to have someone who could blend in with the people of that world but that did not explain the rest of the issues they all were now forced to deal with.

If the Admiral was aware of an assassination plot the scale of which they were told had taken place, why dispatch only one officer?  In fact, why dispatch any officers at all? Should the logical step have been to remove the Royal family from harm's way entirely? If on the other hand no such assassination plot was known, then why send A'Janni to KZINTI ALPHA? The more Sarena thought about this whole thing, the more she had to conclude that there was something missing about what they knew of the situation. The most interesting part of this was her suspicion that the metallic box now in the possession of the Caitian Special Security Envoy played a key role in all of this, but what?

As a Caitian, A'Janni was already physically stronger and faster than anyone else on board the BASTET, so it was conceded that his endurance would be equally superior. As a member of the NEW ALEXANDRIA staff, it was equally accepted that his mental training excluded him falling for the rudimentary interrogation techniques. This meant that the Executive Officer needed to get creative if she was to get any sort of information out of him, especially if it was information that he was not ready or willing to share at this time.

"Can I ask you a question?" Sarena figured that anything was better than continuing with the silence that both seemed far too comfortable in.

"Of course," the Caitain said, his gaze lost in the half-empty glass of Risian milk sitting on the table in front of him.

"Was it the Admiral who assigned you to this mission or did you volunteer?"

"Does it make a difference?" A'Janni replied, his low growl voice fitting the image of an angered cat perfectly.

"Not really," Sarena said. "Either way you were sent to KZINTI ALPHA and were there when the Royal Family was assassinated. The only difference is who you end up blaming in the end. If you volunteered for the mission, you will perceive the responsibility as being entirely yours for not having been able to protect them as you believed you should have. if, on the other hand, it was the Admiral who assigned you to this mission, you are far more likely to end up blaming him for not having been able to predict the events more accurately. Yes, you will still find it in you to blame yourself, but sooner or later you will be able to shift that blame onto him as it was the Admiral who sent you there alone instead of with enough resources to stop the assassination of every man, women, and child present in the palace.

The Caitian remained silent, his gaze stayed locked on the small white pool located half-way down the glass in front of him. Sarena could tell that he was thinking about her question, maybe not in trying to find the words to properly answer but rather in analyzing the significance of what she had proposed. The Executive Officer clearly acknowledged his feelings and maybe even understood them on some level even though she could never fully feel what he did. How could she? It was him and not her who had been on the planet, inside the Royal Palace when the assassination plot took place claiming the lives of everyone.

"Did you know that the Kzinti do not drink anything that resembles milk?" A'Janni asked, deflecting the conversation onto a completely different subject. At least he was talking, which was a step higher than what they were both doing before. "They see it as a weakness. Cubs are weaned from their mother's as quickly as possible under the claim that this will help them grow up to be strong enough to survive on their own. Evidently, that did not help them as they are all dead, every single one of them along with their father and mother. None of them deserved this." The Caitian's one good eye filled with tears as the memories of what happened became too much for him to bear.

In an effort to get the Caitian to talk, Sarena realized that she might have pushed him down a path that would be best suit to the Ship's Counselor Nicola than her. Yes, the Executive Officer thought that tapping into the focus of his anger might work, but she had never expected that his feelings would so complete turn towards sadness. In hindsight, Valentine should have anticipated that possibility, but now it was too late.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P008: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34064.1445 ("Failed Protector")
"Failed Protector"
[previous (ANU) "Tracking" / (BAS) "Cats Have Feelings Too"]]

Setting: USS BASTET, Mess hall
Stardate: 34064.1445 

He could feel the primal rage mounting within him, the urge to roar at the top of his lungs grew increasingly stronger with each beat of his aching heart. He could so easily lash out and lay waste to this room but what purpose would it serve? King Prexiss was dead, so was his mate Queen Sheetora along with all of their offsprings. The only possible solace A'Janni could hold onto was that neither of the parents was alive to witness the carnage left behind following the massacre that claimed the lives of their whole family.

The agony brought on by what happened was never far from the mind of the Caitian, and although he believed himself able to control his feelings the few simple questions from Commander Valentine were enough to prove him wrong. The wounds were still much too fresh for him to be able to begin to forget, and those same wounds fueled his desire for vengeance. All he could do though was to guard the OGRAAM with his life and be thankful that the BASTET and its crew responded as quickly as they had to save the life of Grand Dyke Krayss, the last surviving member of the Royal Court of KZINTI ALPHA.

After wiping the tears from his eye, A'Janni looked up and met the Commander's gaze. The woman was visibly concerned about something but the Caitian could not exactly say why. Was she worried about him and how the trauma of what he had gone through would affect him? Was she preoccupied with the Grand Duke and his injuries?  Was it the artifact that was now in his care that her thoughts were focused on or was there something else playing on her mind? Whatever it was, the Caitian was ready to answer all of her questions and concerns if only for one reason; this ship and crew had saved their lives.  "I can see in your eyes that you have several questions. What it is that you would like to know?"

The Commander was taken aback by the bluntness of the statement, but the surprise did not last long. "There are a great many things I would like to know," the woman answered. "Most you would not be able to answer, so I will keep my queries on matters that are more in line with you, the Grand Duke and the course of events that brought you here. I am aware of your report to Captain Iverson about your assignment to KZINTI ALPHA as well as your official role as a Special Security Envoy. What I am curious about is your personal relationship with the King and Queen. I understand that you feel that their assassination is some sort of failure on your part, but your reactions indicate a much more personal take."

A'Janni looked down and exhaled. The advantage of the Priority Black emergency was that a ship was nearly assured to come to their rescue, the drawback though was that the ship would be one attached to NEW ALEXANDRIA which meant that the crew worked in the field of Intel. After a few seconds, he looked up once again. "Queen Sheetora is... was a dedicated mother, an intelligent diplomat, and a fierce fighter but most importantly, she was a friend. The King accepted my assignment to his Court, but it was her who made me feel welcome. Thanks to her, I actually felt as if I was part of the family and not just someone sent to keep an eye on them."

"That is why Krayss trusts you the way he does," the Commander said nodding her head. "His sister trusted you and he feels obliged, in honor of her memory, to do the same no matter what might have transpired on KZINTI ALPHA. That is why he allowed you to hold on to that," she added pointing to the metallic box the Caitian was holding."

"Prexiss was a great King, but it was Sheetora that solidified his rule over the people. She was as charming as could be, able to convince the most stubborn of souls to go against their hardened ways," the Caitian said clearly admiring the deceased woman. "With such an ability, she could have ruled over multiple worlds, but she also possessed the kindest of heart, always concerning herself with the needs of others no matter their rank, position or station."

"It is hard to imagine that anyone would want to harm her or her family," the Commander said.

"We both know that her being so kind is just the reason some needed to want her dead," A'Janni said. "Due to her influence, many of the Dukes saw their ways challenged. To rule with an iron-fist was no longer acceptable, as was claiming wealth for one's own desires. The positions within the Royal Court were administrative and no longer reflected how much power one had over others. Admiral Koniki became aware of the dissatisfaction of some of the Dukes and sent me in to identify which one of them might do something about it. Obviously, no one expected that it would be all of them." The Caitain felt a wave of sadness swell within him as he silently wished he could have predicted what came to pass and done more to stop it, but in the end, his presence proved to be too little too late.

"Tell me about this OGRAAM," the Commander said, hoping that the change of subject might help the imposing bipedal feline to regain control of his emotions.

"I cannot tell you more than you already know," A'Janni admitted as he pushed the box towards the Commander. "The artifact, as well known as it is by the general population of KZINTI ALPHA, is more a mystery than anything else. There are countless rumors and legends as to what it can do beyond its official function to keep a genetic record of the Royal family. Right now, I believe that the only man who truly knows what this box can do is in your infirmary, everyone else has died."

Finding herself sharing in the Caitian's sadness, Commander Valentine reached out for the box and pulled it closer in order to get a better view of the ornate inscriptions on it.  Wishing to get a better idea of the item as a whole, she took hold of the box and lifted it off the table not expecting just how heavy the artifact actually was. Trying her best to avoid dropping it, the Human woman began to juggle the OGRAAM and by the time A'Janni realized what was happening, it was already too late. The metallic box fell onto the edge of the table before tumbling down to the floor where it crashed with a resounding thud followed by a strange twinge that seemed to hint to something inside having been knocked loose.

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P009: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34064.1515 ("Something Broken")
"Something Broken"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Tracking" / (BAS) "Failed Protector"]

Setting: USS BASTET, Main Engineering
Stardate: 34064.1515

The dented metal box sat on a small, elevated platform set in the middle of a worktable. Three people surrounded the small area, all of them looking intensely at the imperfect cube. An uneasy silence hung in the air as thoughts rushed through their minds. Cmdr. Valentine was mildly upset, as she believed that this was her fault. That she liked it or not, she was the last person to touch the OGRAAM. The Caitian A'Janni appeared nervous, and this for good reasons. The previous owner had placed the item in his care for safekeeping. Now it sat on the table, possibly broken. Gabrielle Wolf on her side seemed indifferent as she gazed upon the cubic artifact. Her true expertise was sabotage, but the BASTET needed an Engineer. It was because of this that she took on the role contrary to her experience. Fixing things to work had proven to be an interesting challenge, but this was something completely different. Despite all of her efforts, the box remained just that; a box.

Sensors and tricorders could not penetrate the box's outer shell. Therefore, there was no way for anyone to know what was causing the rattling noise. It was very possible that the fall had knocked something loose, but there was no way to be certain. What actually concerned Gabrielle was why such an important device would be built to be so fragile?

The woman of Germanic descent sighed and shook her head. "I can't help you. I cannot scan the inside of this thing to see if something is broken. Heck, I cannot even find a way to open the blasted thing. Why not just ask the owner of this thing to check it? Surely he will know if this sound is normal or not."

The Caitain quickly responded by frantically shaking his head. "We can't!" He paused, considering his choice of words. "I can't. The Grand Duke would never forgive me, even if the OGRAAM was not damaged."

"If we can't scan the insides, open the device or ask someone else, what options do we have left?" Cmdr Valentine asked. She wanted to see this situation addressed, but she also needed a way to do so.

It was the Uxali scientist who spoke next. "Misaki has already tried the scientific approach," she said to a very confused Caitian. "Gabrielle did everything she could on the engineering front, which leaves us with needing to go elsewhere."

A'Janni pointed to the brown-haired woman who had been blonde only a few seconds ago. "What's going on?" The Caitian was visibly puzzled and confused by the change in the woman's appearance.

"It's a long and complicated story," Sarena dismissed. Dealing with the OGRAAM would be a breeze when compared to trying to explain their ILO. "Just know that it's perfectly normal."

"There might be one person who could help us." This time it was the bald Oltarian Priestess who spoke. With her thoughts on trying to find a way to solve the mystery of the box, Ema was not paying attention to the other conversation

"Normal?" A'Janni gasped. "This is normal?"

The Commander actually grinned. "It is normal for her. As I said, it's a long story." Turning her attention to the Priestess, the First Officer continued. "Who do you have in mind?"

"Elan Talak Fairborn," Ema replied in a matter-of-fact fashion. "The man's exploits in the field of Engineering are known to all Oltharians. That they belong to the Religious or Scientific Circle, everyone knows of him. Maybe the fact that his uncle is the High Elder helps, but his skills and knowledge are almost legendary. He might be able to help us figure this out without having to call upon the Grand Duke."

Dismissing his apprehension to the woman's changing appearance, A'Janni turned to Sarena. "If there is something we can do other than confronting the Grand Duke, we need to do it."

"Elan is on board the ANUBIS," Cmdr. Valentine said. "I doubt that it will be easy for us to get to him."

"Actually," Gemma said, the auburn-haired woman now standing where the Oltharian had been. "We intercepted communication from OLTHAR PRIME. Elan is back on his homeworld, which is not all that far from here. We could easily make our way there and give the warships looking for us time to get tired from their fruitless search."

"How many different people is she?" The Caitain was having a difficult time with the ILO's display of some of her many personalities.

"A lot," Sarena noted. "I did say that this was a long and complicated story." The Commander looked at the ILO for a moment before reaching for her communicator and tapping it. "Valentine to Iverson."

=/\= Go ahead Commander. =/\=

"I recommend that we head for OLTHAR PRIME. We have need of Elan who, according to Gemma, is there. This would also give us the chance to catch up on what we missed while on ELYSIA. As an additional bonus, it will give those warships that were after the Grand Duke time to lose interest in their search."

The silence that followed indicated that the Captain was debating acting on the recommendation. There were a lot of reasons to refuse this course of action, but there were also many reasons to do it. =/\= We will be setting course for OLTHAR PRIME. I hope to get more than a recommendation from you as official reason for my report. =/\=

"Understood Captain," Cmdr. Valentine said turning to look at the ILO. Gemma said nothing although she understood that she would be the one to inform the Captain as to why they were now heading to the Oltharian homeworld.

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P010: USS BASTET: Andersson: 34064.1545 ("Healing The Healer")
"Healing The Healer"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Tracking" by Hanali / (BAS) "Something Broken" by Rachel]

Setting: BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34064.1545

Doctor Andersson let out a long sigh of relief as she stepped back to observe her handiwork. The injury sustained by the feline-humanoid was extensive and would have been fatal for the greater majority of people and races she knew and dealt with, but somehow the Kzinti Grand Duke had survived.

"I did it," Sofia said with a tone of surprise, figuratively tapping herself on the back, unable to physically do so if she wanted to avoid displaying a bloody handprint on her back.

"Was there really any doubt?" Nicole smiled as the Ship's Counselor slid off the nearby empty bed she was sitting on. "I read your Academy file, you passed every surgical test with flying colors and your major is in Alien Biology. I think you would have had to do it on purpose in order not to succeed in this last operation."

"I appreciate what you are trying to do, and I love you for it," Andresson said smiling back. "I can always count on you to help me feel better about anything and everything, but this was not as easy as you think. It was not a simple wound to mend, not even close. I had to rebuild a lot of the surrounding tissues and muscles to fill the hole left behind by whatever weapon was used to cause his mess."

"A'Janni mentioned that it was a Kzinti Battle Lance," Dima said, knowing very well that this would annoy the other woman.

"I take it back," the Doctor playfully snapped.

"Which part?" The Counselor teased. "You loving me or me always being there to help you feel better about yourself?"

"You are having way too much fun with all of this," Sofia said putting her hands on her hips to show just how frustrated she was. "I did not realize how much you enjoy making me miserable." Even if it was not for the smile on the physician's lips, the Counselor knew that the woman was kidding. "I might have to schedule a special emergency session to talk about my bruised feelings"

"Would it make you feel better if I kissed those bruises better?" Nicole laughed.

"It might," the Doctor replied trying to sound as unwilling to give in as she could manage, which was as far from the truth as could be. The simple thought of the Trill's lips touching her skin was enough to send a wave of delight through the woman's body and soul.

"If that doesn't work, I could always ask an Oltharian to come and talk to you. I hear that they are very fond and admiring of Doctors, or Healers as they like to refer to them," Nicole said crossing her arm in front of her.

"An Oltharian?" Sofia echoed wondering where this had come from. "We only know one member of that race, and she is not in the habit of just showing up when you ask her to. In fact, none of Gemma's personalities seem to appear when you expect them to unless we are in the middle of a life-or-death situation.

"Actually we do know of another, and we are on our way to see him," the Trill explained. "The BASTET is heading for OLTHAR PRIME so that Commander Valentine can speak with Elan who is there. Apparently he took his leave from the ANUBIS."

"Why are we heading to OLTHAR PRIME in the first place?" Sofia was deeply puzzled and confused. "We were dragged into this mess by a Priority Black emergency call sent by a NEW ALEXANDRIA Caitian operative in order to save a Kzinti royal court official. What role could the Oltharian's play in this?"

"That I do not know," Nicole admitted. "All I know is that we are heading for OLTHR PRIME as per the recommendation of Commander Valentine.  Just look at it on the bright side, that planet is known for its natural beauty and charms, and the Oltharians will be more than happy to see us. Whatever the reason or reasons may be for us going there, I do not see why we cannot take advantage of it. After everything that we have gone through, I am convinced that this will be a nice change of pace for however long it lasts. In addition, I am sure that your patient will benefit from a nice little relaxing stroll on one of the many enchanting beaches they have on that world."

"A nice walk on a beach," the Physician mused. "That sound like it would be wonderful, but I am not sure that the Grand Duke will be up to such a physical exercise, and since it would be a shame to waste such an opportunity, we will have to go down and enjoy this walk for him."

Nicole chuckled. "That would be heavenly. We might have to make that stroll a quick dash, but I am sure that it will be just as enjoyable as long as we are there together."

"Perfect," Sofia smiled. "Then, it's a date."

Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
M11-P011: USS BASTET: Dima: 34064.1600 ("Picking Up The Pieces")
“Picking Up The Pieces”
[Previous Posts: (ANU) “Unnerving Stillness” /(BAS) “Healing The Healer”]


Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34064.1600

While Sofia had her hands full with the care and recovery of the Grand Duke, Nicole wasn’t content to accept their unexpected destination. She hoped that by heading to the Bridge, she’d get a few more answers.

The joined Trill was already convinced they had a bonafide mystery on their hands. The last surviving member of the Kzinti royal family had been rescued, severely injured but clutching a strange box which was called an OGRAAM. The object’s purpose was shrouded in uncertainty, despite the explanation they were given. Krayss was attended to by a Caitian escort, Lieutenant JG A’Janni, who had called for help using a distress signal only known by those in Intel circles. His assignment had been to protect the ruling family of KZINTI ALPHA. Despite his training and his obvious physical strength, someone had managed to carry out their plans, leaving the Grand Duke as the only survivor, and A’Janni to try and figure out what had happened, who did it, and perhaps most importantly, why.

That in and of itself made plenty of loose ends, but now they were headed to the Oltharian homeworld, to see none other than Lieutenant Commander Elan Fairborn. It was a familiar name, but otherwise the reason for their trip was unknown to Nic or Sofia.

Nicole’s interactions with Fairborn had been few and far between during her time on the ANUBIS, but his return to OLTHAR PRIME seemed out of character for the man who she recalled was very devoted to his duty and keeping any and all mechanical items operating within (or above) parameters. Then again, she had yet to meet an Engineer who didn’t have an uncanny connection to their warp cores.

The Captain and Commander Valentine were speaking, and as Nicole approached the CO’s chair, Sarena welcomed her. “What brings you here- have you come to take another stab at Bridge duty?” There was a bit of mischief in her eyes, although her overall expression was serious.

The stress of those moments washed over the young Counselor. There really wasn’t a right answer to that question. While the only way to get more experience was to participate, it was a bit nerve wracking. “All in due time, I’m sure,” Nicole mused out loud. “Although my reason for coming here was to ask, why do we need the assistance of Elan Fairborn? What could he possibly have to do with the Kzinti?”

“The Official Genetic Records and Archives Matrix may be broken,” Iverson said as she pulled no punches, still adjusting to her second in command’s bad news. “And it is beyond our expertise to fix it.”

“Did something happen to it during the assassination attempt?” Dima asked.

“I wish that had been the case,” Sarena lamented. “I was discussing the situation with A’Janni and taking a closer look at the artifact. It fell out of my grasp and hit the floor.”

Nicole thought deeply for a few moments. “Maybe Gemma could-” she began, but the ExO shook her head no.

“Actually, it was Priestess Ema who suggested we ellicit the assistance of Mister Fairborn. That was *after* Gabrielle Wolf and Wimda had a chance to look everything over.”

“And Grand Duke Krayss is unaware of this development,” Nicole said hesitantly. It wasn’t likely that he had awoken from surgery yet.

“That is correct,” Selene confirmed with a nod of her head. “And frankly, informing him is far down on the list of priorities.”

Susan Ledbetter

M11-P012: USS BASTET: Iverson: 34064.1630 ("Why? Why Not?")
"Why? Why Not?"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Unnerving Stillness" / (BAS) "Picking Up The Pieces")

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34064.1615

Selene shared the reservations voiced by Nicole about their heading to OLTHAR PRIME to seek the assistance of Elan. The Oltharian Engineer was not new to the world of Intel but it still felt strange to seek his help at this time. The Engineer was good, there was no denying that, but surely there were others equally qualified to address this particular situation. That said, the Captain saw no harm in reaching out to the Oltharian, at the very least they knew him having worked with the towering man before.

"Counsellor, while I have you here, can I see you in my Ready Room?"

Dima knew that the question was nothing more than a polite way by the Captain to request a private meeting with the Counsellor. Maybe this had something to do with Nicole wanting to be a bridge officer or maybe it was about some aspect of their current situation. Whichever the case was, the joint Trill was not going to say no, not that she would have refused no matter what was happening.

Setting: USS BASTET, Ready Room
Stardate: 34064.1620

"Is everything all right Captain?" Nicole asked. As a Counsellor, it was her responsibility to make sure everyone was emotionally well, the Captain being her highest priority in that regards.

"Everything is fine," Selene casually replied. "At least as fine as can be given the mystery that we have been plunged into. I called you here more to see how you and the rest of the crew are doing. We managed to get back to our home dimension and could not manage to travel a single light-year before being dragged into another story. I know some people like this sort of thing, dreading the quiet times between missions, but I also know that there are those who use that time to re-energize in order to have the mental fortitude to face whatever it is we end up going up against next."

"As strange and unexpected as our current situation may be, the crew appears to be in good spirit and happy t be back in action," Nicole explained. "Our time spent on ELYSIA was more than enough for everyone to relax and re-energize, and in a lot of cases, some members of the crew were getting anxious about having something unexpected happen. As great as the whole stay was, and I can speak personally, we were all more than ready to do more than what we were doing. We are just not the type of people who would find such a paradise to be appealing, at least not for an extended period of time. This mystery we have found our way into might have been exactly what was needed to get us back into the swing of things."

"Good," Selene said, cracking a brief grin. The woman was not one to openly display her emotions at the best of times, so to see her react this way was a pleasant surprise to the Counselor.

=/\= Captain, =/\= the voice of the First Officer filled the small room. =/\= Lieutenant Gemma would like to speak with you. =/\=

"I better leave you to talk with her," the joint Trill said, already making her way to the door. "It might not be a good idea to let Gemma wait as there is no telling if it will not be someone else to step in if you do."

"Thank you, Counsellor," the Captain continued. "I would like for us to continue this at a later time. There might be some aspects of our return to our home dimension that I would like to get your professional opinion on."

"Of course," Nicole said just as the door leading back onto the bridge opened revealing a very serious looking Gemma. "Lieutenant," Dima offered.

"Counselor," the Intel Operative said in return allowing the Trill to exit before walking in. Like the perfect Starfleet Officer, Gemma approached the desk and stood at attention handing over a PADD to the woman on the other side.

The Intelligence Liaison Operative stood perfectly still in the middle of the office, her hands tightly clasped behind her back while she waited for the Captain to acknowledge or comment on what she was reading. The report might not have been as complete as Iverson would have liked it to be, but it contained enough information to adequately justify as to why the BASTET was on route to OLTHAR PRIME.

"Is there anything more you can tell me about this device?" Selene asked. "Since the start of this story, that box has been the focus in one way or another of everything being said and done." The decision to head to OLTHAR PRIME was already made, as witnessed by their current course and heading, but the Captain hoped to get a little more information on the reason why. Since the call for a Priority Black Emergency, the BASTET had been operating with very little information to go on and this despite the report made by the Caitian Intel Operative to KZINTI ALPHA. For a reason or reasons yet to be determined, the details of what was happening had not come to light, and this was starting to annoy the Captain.

"As stated in my report," Gemma began. "As mysterious as the OGRAAM is, it is easy to see that it means a great deal to both A'Janni and Grand Duke Krayss. That our instruments are unable to penetrate the outer casing of the simplistic-looking object only serves to confirm the importance of the device even though we can only guess and speculate as to its purpose. No one would go through all of this trouble to protect whatever is inside without it being of great importance to someone of equal stature, or to a larger group of people. The behaviour of the Grand Duke in the Infirmary only reinforces this unless we are willing to accept the possibility that the item is nothing more than an oddity and that both the Caitian and Kzinti are as mad as a hatter."

Selene thought that maybe Nicole should have stayed and been part of this briefing. As amusing as the thought of the two feline-man being crazy was, Iverson did not smile. Dismissing all of this by simply claiming that one or both of their guests were not in full control of their faculties was a cop-out was Selene not ready to even consider. Trust was not something to be given away freely, especially not in the world of Intel, but in order to survive, those within this universe of moving, living shadows needed to at the very least be able to trust one another.  A'Janni trusted that someone would respond to his desperate call for help, and now Captain Iverson needed to trust him in return that the extreme priority call was valid even if the reasons had not been fully revealed at this time.

"Do you believe that the course of action suggested by Ema, namely that we head to OLTHAR PRIME in search of Elan, is the right one?" The question was not truly necessary but the Captain wanted to make sure she understood where exactly the idea had originated.  Gemma had failed to mention this particular detail in her report, maybe because she believed it to be unimportant or maybe because she feared that it might taint the opinion of their Commanding Officer. To be perfectly honest, Selene only wanted to know to get a better idea of the kind of interaction the woman standing in front of her had with one of her other many personalities. The time spent by the crew on ELYSIA provided many with the opportunity to get to know one another better, something that many including Nicole and Sofia had taken full advantage of while they could. The same could not be said for multi-facetted Gemma, the stay on the paradise world had proven to be more a journey of self-discovery for the woman simultaneously living multiple lives.

The answer that followed came from an unexpected voice that came from a person standing exactly where the Intel Operative stood. "The Oltharian needed to feel useful and prove herself to be more than what she believes everyone sees her as namely, nothing more than a Priestess with an extremely idealistic view of the universe based on a very religious mentality. It is therefore very possible that her directing the BASTET to OLTHAR PRIME could have been more about herself than Elan and his expertise."

Selene had looked away for less than a second, but it proved ample time for Gemma to be replaced by some else, someone the likes of which the Captain had never seen or even heard of before. The woman appeared and sounded refined and wise beyond her years but that was as much as the Commanding Officer could tell about her. Once again, Iverson found herself wishing that the Counsellor had not left. "That is a very interesting observation, Miss..."

"My apologies," the blonde-haired woman said with respect and reverence. "My name is Gwenvel. We never had the opportunity to meet until now because I felt that my coming to you could be misunderstood by your Counsellor as an attempt for me to take over her duties, be it in part or in whole, which I am not. The only reason I am here now is that I believe I am in possession of insights that Counsellor Dima does not in regards to the Oltharian Ema Fairchild."

Iverson studied the woman on every level she could. Her appearance was clearly human but her posture and speech pattern hinted to there being more, much more.  "Thank you for your input," Selene offered. "In this business information is key, and I am very grateful for your contribution as I am sure Nicole will be. Despite her many lifetimes of experiences, I am afraid that she is very much like the rest of us -- limited in the scope of our knowledge."

"Joint Trills have a remarkable advantage in being able to live multiple lives and experience the universe from vastly different perspectives," Gwenvel said.

"Yes, Counsellor Dima does possess a clear advantage in that regards, but I am sure that she is not the only one benefiting from this wider range of perception," Selene knew how to play this game, but somehow she suspected that this little exchange was more a friendly exchange over being a covert gathering of Intel.

"El'Aurians are blessed with long life, but unlike joint Trills, we are limited to a single body and set of eyes that allow us to see the universe around us," Gwenvel said revealing the part of herself the Captain was clearly trying to get out of her. "As for your other question, the one that you have not yet voiced, I do believe that our going to OLTHAR PRIME is beneficial to our solving this mystery. I cannot explain why, but I can tell you this, I have a very strong feeling about the role the Oltharian Elan Fairborn will play in this. In the grander scheme of things, this detour to the Oltharian homeworld is not a bad thing, even if it only gives the crew the chance to get used to being back on the BASTET with a mission to occupy their thoughts instead of wondering what they would do next. Seeing a familiar friendly face will not be a bad thing either."

Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer


Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M11-P013: USS BASTET: Fairborn: 34064.1940 ("Like Waves On A Beach")
"Like Waves On A Beach"
Previous posts (ANU) "Waiting" / (BAS) "Why? Why Not?"

"Never waste any amount of time doing anything important when there is a sunset outside that you should be sitting under!”
- C. JoyBell C.

Setting:  OLTHAR PRIME, Talsera peninsula
Stardate: 34064.1940

The emerald-green waves gently and rhythmically washed ashore barely reaching the bare feet of the couple as they sat on the pristine white sand of the isolated beach. The salty breeze that was part of this enchanting scene caressed the faces of the two figures who sat there as one, their bodies pressed one against the other as tightly as could be. The muscular arms of the gentle giant easily wrapped around the smaller woman sitting in front of him, holding her close as if protecting her from some unseen evil. Both were as happy and content as could be, watching the Oltharian sun slowly vanish beneath the distant watery horizon. This had become their nightly routine, one that they enjoyed a little more with each passing day since their arrival to this dreamy locale.

Elan Talak Fairborn, the once dedicated Starfleet officer had returned home to spend his days with the woman he loved, a woman whom he had believed lost to him more than once. Through the countless hardships he endured over the years, the one thing that kept him going was the possibility of being with his beloved as they were here today. As great as his love of Engineering and Robotics was, they were no match for the feelings he possessed for the woman who had sacrificed everything she was in order to be here with him.

Both had made many sacrifices in order to be here together, but neither thought back to those with the slightest hint of regret. In fact, if given the chance, each knew that they would both act in the exact same manner they had before because it would lead them to be here, together, in each other's arms where they belonged.

"And thus ends day number 44," Amber said with a drifting smile, pressing her head back against the giant's chest.

"Like the waves of the ocean against the beach, the sun comes and goes washing clean the events of the previous day, allowing the following day to be a fresh and new beginning," Elan said, delighting in the feeling of the woman pressing against him. "To me, 44 days or 44 years would be just as sweet as long as they are spent with you."

"A musician *and* a poet," Amber smiled as she looked up onto the Oltharian's face. "How did I get to be so lucky?"  Elan smiled back but before he could offer a reply, the faint sound of an active communications channel being activated reached them from the small hut they now called their home. "It is way too early for the daily reports," the auburn-haired woman said sounding a little confused.

"It is too late for anyone from the capital to contact us to arrange for our provisions," Elan added. "That can only mean one thing..."

"We are on OLTHAR PRIME, on the Talsera peninsula away from anything and everything, why would you automatically think that a call outside regular hours would mean there is some sort of crisis?"

"Force of habit?" The imposing Oltharian replied with a hint of amusement in his voice as he shrugged his massive shoulders. "After working under the banner of NEW ALEXANDRIA for so long, you get conditioned to think and react that way."

"Well then, that is something I will need to fix," Amber said grinning. "So, are you actually going to actually leave me here alone in order to answer that call?"

"I am answering that call to ensure that all is well so that you and I can have many more days like the last 44 we have enjoyed," Elan said in his defense. "It is an unfortunate reality of the universe we know; things happen no matter how much you wish them not to. There could be a storm heading our way or maybe a meteor shower is going to be hitting this region. My priority is still to stay here with you, and my answering that call is just my way of making sure that I can do so without worries. I want you to be safe and us to be together like this forever."

"Together, forever? Then, I better go with you," Amber said beaming a smile as she stood and turned around in order to offer Elan a helping hand in getting to his feet. "You now owe me for interrupting our enjoyment of the sunset. So, as soon as you have answered this call, I will be expecting you to play your flute until we are both too tired to stay awake."

Elan smiled as he gladly accepted both the woman's helping hand as well as her conditions. Playing his flute for her had never a burden or a punishment, and she knew this all too well. All that she was doing was to use the circumstances to tease him into doing something that he freely, willingly and adoringly did for her every night.

The couple made their way back to their hut, faster then they would have normally but clearly not as fast as they could. Even with Elan claiming that this might be some sort of emergency, the Oltharian was not in a rush to discover the reason for the interruption of their evening routine.  As they reach the small structure, both saw the Starfleet logo being displayed on the desktop communication monitor.

"This cannot be good," Amber sighed.

"It does not change anything," Elan said as he sat in front of the communication device. "We are not going anywhere. I am answering this because I want to know what is happening and to tell whoever is calling us that I am not leaving this place." Having said this, the Oltharian pressed the main control and acknowledged the call causing the logo to be replaced by the face of a Starfleet Officer.

[/\] Elan, it is good to see you again. [/\] It was the Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET, Captain Selene Iverson.

"It is good to see you as well," Elan offered before taking a short pause. "I suspect that this call is not just to check up on me."

[/\] We need your help, your expertise. In a nutshell, there is a piece of sensitive equipment that we are unable to figure out, and it was suggested by someone on board the BASTET that you might be able to help. Let's just say that your reputation and expertise as an Engineer as well as your skills with fine and delicate devices are well known.  I promise that this will not take you away from what you are doing for more than a few hours. [/\]

Elan visibly sunk. The request was as simple as could be but it did place him in a difficult situation, one that placed him at odds with two distinct sets of beliefs he held dear.  As a member of the Scientific Circle, the Oltharian could not refuse a challenge like the one he was being presented with. As a silent follower of the ways of the Religious Circle, he could not refuse a request for assistance, but both of these ideals went directly against his promise to Amber to not leave this place. The tone in Iverson's voice might have sounded dire but it was clearly not the type of emergency that required him to abandon everything.  After thinking it over for a few moments, the giant offered his reply. "I am sorry Captain, but I cannot assist you."

"Elan! Don't be that way," Amber pleaded.  "She is only asking for a couple of hours. I'll even go with you if you want."

[/\] Elan, [/\] Iverson continued. [/\] We are only asking as a favour. It would help us a great deal if you could just have a look at this thing. I can assure you that the BASTET will not leave orbit as long as you are on board. [/\]

"I appreciate your offer, Captain, but I cannot," the Oltharian said clearly sounding torn. "I made a promise, one that I am not willing to break. I answered the call because I wanted to know what was happening, but it was mostly to inform whoever was calling that I am here to stay."

"Captain Iverson, can you give us a minute?" Amber said pushing herself in front of the communication screen effectively blocking the woman's view without hindering her ability to listen in on what was going to be said. "I appreciate what it is you are doing, I truly am, but these people have come here seeking your help. I am sure that this was not a simple decision. Surely, you can understand this and give them the couple of hours they asked for."

"I have this bad feeling," Elan admitted. "I have not told you this, but I have been haunted by dreams, well, more like nightmares about my leaving this place and finding it impossible to return.  That is part of the reason why I wanted to answer the call, to see if I was right, now it seems that I was and I will not let this dream become reality."

"My sweet Elan," Amber said caressing he Oltharian's cheeks with her hands before turning to look back at the screen and the woman's image displayed on it. "Captain Iverson, would it be possible for you to have whatever this thing is to be beamed here. We may not have the most powerful equipment here, but Elan is certainly not empty-handed, as much as he wanted to be away from everything, he just could not leave the majority of his toys behind."

Captain Iverson simply shook her head. [/\] I am sure we can arrange for it to be beamed down to you. Thank you, both of you. We should be in orbit within the next 12 hours, we will contact you again then. Iverson out. [/\]

"It's alright," Amber said after turning to look at the visibly troubled Oltharian. "This is what you do; you have always helped those in need and I love you for that. In 12 hours they will be here, and a few hours after that they will be gone and we will still be here, together, ready to enjoy another day and another sunset. Now, you still owe me. I want to hear you play your flute."

The Oltharian smiled. From the first day he met Amber Satori, Elan could not refuse her, and he was certainly not about to start.  The next 12 hours or so would be spent as they normally did, and the couple of hours that followed would come and go just like the ocean waves on the beach. Feeling more at peace, the towering gentle giant fetched the musical instrument in question and settled in in a chair in order to play his music to the one and only audience that mattered to his heart.

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA (currently on the USS BASTET with his fiancée)
M11-P014: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34064.2100 ("Light-Footed")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
[previous post (ANU) "C is for Covert Approach" / (BAS) "Like Waves on a Beach")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34064.2100

The Executive Officer sat in the central chair as the BASTET rushed at maximum speed to OLTHAR PRIME. Captain Iverson was in her office reviewing some of the information they were able to piece together about the war against the Lokustaar. Now that they were closer to the core of Federation space, they were able to intercept communications and reports that gave them a better idea of what had transpired while the crew was stranded on a paradise planet in another dimension.

"You seem preoccupied," the Caitain said, A'Janni having managed to walk up to the Executive Officer without making the slightest sound.

"You are light on your feet for someone as imposing as you are," Sarena pointed out while quickly glaring at the Special Security Envoy to KZINTI ALPHA before looking down at his feet to see that he was not wearing any shoes. As small and insignificant as this detail was, this realization troubled the Executive Officer for no other reason than she had not made a note of this before now.

"My apologies," A'Janni said while he grinned. "It's just the way we are," he added wiggling his toes noticing that the woman's attention had lingered there for a few seconds. "I do have a pair of footwear, but they are currently on KZINTI ALPHA. In an effort to be less of an outsider to the local population, it was best for me to be barefoot. If you wish, I am sure that I could have the ship's replicator create something suitable."

"That will not be necessary," Valentine said. "I would not want the Grand Duke to feel even more isolated than he already is following what happened. Speaking of which, how is he doing? I know that you went back to the Infirmary to check up on him."

"According to Doctor Anderson, he is doing well and is recuperating from the surgery," A'Janni reported. "She believes that he will be able to get back to his feet in a week or so, but knowing Krayss as I do, she will be lucky to keep in him in bed for a few days."

"In a few days, we should be well on our way from OLTHAR PRIME, hopefully with that contraption of yours back in order without the Grand Duke being aware of what happened. What we do after that though is a mystery," the Executive Officer said.

"I do not believe that it is that much of a mystery," the Caitian sad. "At least not as far as Grand Duke Krayss is concerned. He will want to return to KZINTI ALPHA and find who was responsible for the massacre of the royal family. Even if he is unable to find any clues, he will want to return in order to offer is last regards to those he lost in that ruthless attack."

"I am guessing that his returning to KZINTI ALPHA will not depend on whether or not Captain Iverson decides to do so," Sarena said understanding enough of the Grand Duke's emotions to know that this is what he would do. "Let's be honest, you calling for a Priority Black Emergency got us involved in your rescue, but there is nothing that obliges us to take part in whatever you and the Grand Duke may have in mind. We may be in the business of going up against unseen threats to the Federation and its allies, and even have done our share of fighting against Shadows, but we are certainly not in the business of running after ghosts."

"With all due respect, Commander," Gemma said surprising both the Executive Officer and Caitian. "Are we not bound to assist any member of the organization we belong to, namely NEW ALEXANDRIA when they express an urgent need?"

"We are," Sarena replied glancing down at the woman's feet wondering if she too was barefooted in order to explain how she had managed to sneak up on both of them so completely. "And we did," the Commander clarified. "The Priority Black Emergency is what brought us here in the first place, but the emergency is no more. As unlikely as it may be, the Captain would be well within her right to drop both of our guests on OLTHAR PRIME and let them figure things out on their own. In the end, though, the final decision is hers and hers alone."  After having said this, Valentine could see a hint of discouragement in the Caitian's feline eyes. As much as he was claiming that it was the Grand Duke who wanted to return to KZINTI ALPHA, it was easy to see that A'Janni shared in the sentiment.

"All the Grand Duke and I can do is hope that your Captain will agree to help us in this matter," the Caitian emotionally said. "I understand that this whole affair does not involve any of you, but do you think you could speak to your Captain on our behalf?" A'Janni asked of the ILO who was no longer there causing the Executive Officer to laugh aloud.

"Looks like you are not the only one here able to move quickly and silently," Sarena said finding all of this rather amusing.

"Is that woman for real?" The Caitian exclaimed in both surprise and frustration. "First she completely changes her appearance and now she just vanishes. Does she have the ability to become invisible?"

"Not that we know," Sarena replied never having considered that possibility before. Gemma was strange, to say the least, thanks to her multiple personalities, but no one on board the BASTET knew the full extent of the abilities her nanites granted her. "As great of an advantage as such an ability would be, I seriously doubt that she is able to 'cloak' or she would have already done so more than once since hr arrival on board this ship. Then again, it would not be unlike her to keep such a useful ability a secret to make ensuring that she would have a way out of a tight bind."  Sarena was actually enjoying watching the Caitain nervously searching the bridge for the woman in question. The Executive Officer knew that the ILO had gone into the Captain's Ready Room, but there was no need to inform their guest of this, at least not yet. Maybe doing this was cruel and inconsiderate, but after everything they had endured, a little levity was not such a bad thing.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P015: USS BASTET: Andersson: 34065.0700 ("Business Breakfast")
"Business Breakfast"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Frightening Fragility" by Rachel / (BAS) "Light-Footed" by Karen]

Setting: BASTET, Mess Hall
Stardate: 34065.0700

Doctor Andersson approached the table where Counselor Dima was sitting, Sofia carrying two plates and two drinks while Nicole watched with concerned amazement at the balancing act.

"I think your skills are being wasted as a physician," the joint Trill smiled as her companion reached the edge of the table. "You should have been a waitress. I am sure that you would be able to make quite a life on PARASIDIO or RISA or one of those luxury star liners that travel the edges of the most enchanting nebulas. I can personally vouch for your skills as you have proven yourself to be a woman of many talents," Nicole said adding a teasing wink to punctuate her words.

"A Doctor is what I am and it is what I will be," Sofia grinned placing one of the plates filled with exotic fruits and juice-filled glasses in front of Nic. "It is not like life here on the ANUBIS is boring, and I most certainly cannot complain about the way my evenings and nights have been lately. I think I am doing quite well on the 'excitement' level in that regard."

"Speaking of excitement," the Counselor said using this as a segway into another subject. "How is the Grand Duke?"

"Sleeping," the Doctor replied. "All of his readings are gradually getting stronger and I suspect that at this rate he will be back on his feet before the end of the day. You have to give it to the Kzinti, their physiology is amazing and well on par with that of the Klingons when it comes to being able to survive and recuperate from severe injuries."

"We should be reaching OLTHAR PRIME in about an hour, so hopefully A'Janni can get what he needs from Elan so that we can be back on our way," Dima said. "If Grand Duke Krayss is going to be back to full form, it might be safer for everyone if the OGRAAM was back to working as it was meant to be."

"We still have no idea of what that thing does, do we?"

"Not in the slightest," Nic confirmed. "We know what it is supposed to do, but it is like us knowing that a ship is meant to travel from one place to another. We have no idea of the specifics or of whatever extra that device is meant to do. Whatever the OGRAAM is supposed to do, everyone in the know is being very tight-lipped about it, and unfortunately, there are only two people who might know anything about it."

"I suspect that A'Janni does not know that much more then we do, which is not all that much," Sofia said. "The way he panicked at the thought of the device being broken was overly general."

"I agree," the counselor said. "I noticed that too. He was far more concerned about Krayss' reaction then the device itself which supports your theory. A'Janni knows that the OGRAAM does something important, but I am not entirely certain that he is aware of what that is exactly. Maybe Elan will be able to help clarify this a little more since Ema believes him to be the perfect person for this task."

"Ema is a religious fool who believes in forces that have no place in this universe," Gemma said as she walked by making it evident that the ILO had overheard their conversation.

"The greater majority of cultures believe in some kind of spiritual force," Nicole explained as she was herself one of those mentioned. "Some see it as a presence that lives within everything around them while others believe it to be a more powerful force able to bestow blessing and curses on those beneath it. The specific beliefs may be widely different from one culture to the next, but the general idea remains constant. We believe in something that exists beyond our ability to fully understand."

"Religious beliefs are a desperate effort of lower lifeforms to make sense, be it in part of in whole, of a universe they cannot understand," Gemma said making it clear where her beliefs stood. "How many cultures started by worshiping the sun and moon or moons of their world because that was the only way they could explain to themselves why days turned into nights? How many civilizations embraced the idea of a higher power to justify their way of acting and set the ground rules as to who should live and who should die?  How many people ended up using these primitive beliefs to control the masses in order to have them become mindless slaves? Those who desperately hold on to these beliefs do so because they claim it gives them strength while in reality it only makes them weaker and more vulnerable."

Nicole and Sofia looked at one another for a few seconds never having expected Gemma to go off on such a lecture. For a woman who prided herself on her being the strong silent type, this outburst was truly an unexpected and surprising one. "So you don't believe in anything?" The Counselor asked, not wanting to let this excellent opportunity to learn more about one of the facets of the ever-changing woman.

"I believe that we are responsible for every aspect of our existence," Gemma said. "Everything that happens to us is the culmination of our thoughts and actions. If something goes wrong, we are the only ones to blame, and likewise, there is no reason to thank some unseen force for things going our way. There is no greater purpose at play, no ultimate fate or path that we are set to follow. We are here now, alive, because of what we did, not because it was meant to be."  Having said all of this, Gemma continued on her way to one of the far corners of the Mess Hall where she would sit with her back to the walls in order to enjoy her breakfast if the term *enjoy* could be used to describe what the woman would be feeling.

"You know," Sofia grinned. "It is moments like these that make you almost glad that she has other personalities for us to interact with. Gemma is a wonderful ILO, but she can be scary at times."

"Wait," Nic said lifting a single finger in the air. "Are you telling me that you do not consider the Russian Anya Petrov or the Reman Shinral as being *dangerous*?"

Sofia lowered her head in defeat. "I should have known that you were keeping track of all her personalities and which one of them is dangerous compared to the others. All I meant to say is that when dealing one-on-one with her, there are more pleasant personalities to do that with."

"You are right, there are," Dima agreed. "The more of her personalities we discover though, the more I wonder just how deep this multiple-personality disorder goes."

"Let's pray that we never find out."

"Pray?" Nic teased. "Do you really want to do that here and now with Gemma so close?"

Sofia rolled her eyes before reaching for her communicator. "Doctor Andersson to the Bridge, how long before we are in orbit of OLTHAR PRIME?"

=/\= We will be there Shortly Doctor, =/\= Captain Iverson replied. =/\= Is everything alright? =/\=

"Yes, Captain. I just wanted to know how long before we can beam down and stretch our legs on a nice beach."

=/\= This is not a pleasure stop, Doctor. A'Janni will be beaming down with the OGRAAM along with Commander Valentine. Everyone else will be staying on the BASTET. =/\=

"There goes our walk on the beach," Nicole whispered

"Thank you Captain, sorry for bothering you," Andersson said looking at Dima with a distinct air of disappointment. "Guess this is not the time for me to say that it feels like there is some force out there bent on getting even with me for whatever I did to wrong it."

"You are right," Dima grinned. "This might not be the right time to say that," the Counselor said looking over Sofia's shoulder to see Gemma sitting not all that far away looking back at them as if she was listening in on their conversation.

Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
M11-P016: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34065.0750 ("What Must Be Done")
"What Must Be Done"
[previous (ANU) "Jolan-Tru" / (BAS) "Business Breakfast"]]

Setting: USS BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34065.0750 

A'Janni stood next to the Grand Duke's bed, the Caitian looking down upon the resting Kzinti with sadness and concern. The last surviving member of the royal family of KZINTI ALPHA was out of danger thanks to the medical skills of this ship's CMO. That alone should have been enough to make the Special Security Envoy feel more at ease, but that was not to be. With the OGRAAM damaged, the future of those he was sent to protect was on the line, and now everything rested in the hands of a person he knew very little about.

Yes, Elan Talak Fairborn was known to him, the Oltharian having become almost a legend on his homeworld being the first and only one of his kind to serve in Starfleet. Unfortunately, this did not give A'Janni any details as to what kind of a person the Robotic Engineer was. Would he understand the importance of the device he was being asked to repair? Would he work as hard as he could to fix the OGRAAM and save the future of the ruling family?

"Rest my friend," A'Janni whispered to the unconscious Kzinti, adding a bow to show his respects to the man who, thanks to the medication he was under the effects on, had no idea that someone was in the room with him. "Hopefully, I will be back with something to keep you and I going during these troubled times."

Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room
Stardate: 34065.0800

With the OGRAAM firmly in his grasp, A'Janni made his way to the transporter platform under the watchful gaze of the ship's Executive Officer, Commander Sarena Valentine.

"The coordinates for the transport are set," the woman said. "Elan and his fiancee are waiting for you on the surface. When you are ready to return to the BASTET, just give us a signal. We will beam you back, hopefully with a fixed whatever that thing is."

"If Elan is as competent as you all claim him to be, and he is able to repair the OGRAAM, I promise to tell you everything there is to know about this device," A'Janni said as he looked down onto the device he was holding. "If, on the other hand, he is unable to repair it, I fear that my return will not be a pleasant one, especially after informing Grand Duke Krayss of what happened."

"It is clear that this device is very important and if Elan is unable to fix it, we will find another way," the Commander reassured. "This chip and its crew have faced worst situations and managed to make it through against all odds. Doubt is normal, but do not let it cloud your view of what can be. We will do what must be done in order to fix this situation as best we can."

"Thank you, Commander," A'Janni said feeling a hint of hope growing within him. "I am starting to believe that it was no coincidence that the BASTET was where it needed to be at the exact time it needed to be there in order to come to our rescue. Maybe this universe has decided to play a part in what is to come."

Sarena smiled. "After everything that we have seen and endured, that possibility does not sound as far fetched as you might think it is. Good luck down there, we will be anxiously waiting for your return."

With a nod of his head, the Caitian acknowledged the last words spoken to him and gave the Commander the all-clear to initiate the transport sequence.

Setting: OLTHAT PRIME, Talsera peninsula
Stardate: 34065.0805

As soon as the transport was completed, A'Janni found his nose twitching. The salty sea air was no something her was overly fond of, but the discomfort was a small price to pay if it meant that the OGRAAM could be fixed.  A quick scan of his surroundings made the Caitain realize that he was in a remote region of the planet as only a single building could be seen. This was certainly not the kind of environment he was expecting to find a renowned Robotic Engineer, but given the circumstances he was faced with, A'Janni could not afford to be fussy or demanding.

When he saw two figures coming out of the small building, a towering bald and graying-blue-skinned man closely followed by a smaller framed auburn-haired woman, A'Janni knew that he had arrived where he was meant to be. Now, all that was left to do was to see if the OGRAAM could be repaired, and in so doing save the future of a family and possibly of an entire world in the process. 

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P017: USS BASTET: Fairborn: 34065.0800
("When The Universe Has Other Plans")
"When The Universe Has Other Plans"
Previous posts (ANU) "Jolan-Tru" / (BAS) "What Must Be Done"

"The universe is run by the complex interweaving of three elements. Energy, matter, and enlightened self-interest.”
- Citizen G'Kar

Setting:  OLTHAR PRIME, Talsera peninsula, inside the hut
Stardate: 34065.0800

"Come on Elan," Amber prompted the reluctant Oltharian. "The BASTET is in orbit and they will be beaming down shortly."

"I am not pulling out the red carpet for whoever is coming down," Elan said refusing to move from where he stood, firm and tall like a tree that had been in that specific spot for centuries. "I was asked to look at something and see what I can find, not to host a diplomatic delegation."

"First, we don't have a red carpet," the auburn-haired woman pointed out with a smile, finding the way Elan was behaving almost amusing. "Second, you do not have to be this way. I know you better than that, as much as you may not *want* the peace we have here to be disrupted, even if only for a short time, you are actually excited to tackle this challenge. All I am asking you to do is to be polite and greet the Captain, First Officer or whoever else comes down asking for your help. I promise, your secret will be safe with me."

"Fine," Elan said trying his best to hide the smile that was threatening to take over his face. "Let's get this over with."

"Good," Amber continued having cast an inquiring gaze out of the nearest window. "Now, it is time for us to go, someone is already here and by the looks of them, you will be happy to hear that it is not the Captain nor the First Officer, that is unless one of them was replaced by a Caitian.

Setting:  OLTHAR PRIME, Talsera peninsula, a grassy hill leading to the beach
Stardate: 34065.0810

"Welcome to OLTHAR PRIME," Elan said, greeting their guests with open arms. "I am Elan Talak Fairborn, have you come alone?"

"I did," the Caitian replied. "Captain Iverson did not want to impose on your hospitality any more than she already was, so I came down along with the device that we hope you will be able to fix. My name is A'Janni, and this is the OGRAAM, a very important device that holds the future of an entire world."

"A'Janni?" Amber repeated, the humanoid woman looking at the Caitian as if she had just seen a ghost.

"I'm sorry, have we met before?" The imposing feline-featured man said not recognizing the woman who truly appeared petite when standing next to the Oltharian.

Amber hesitated with her reply but eventually shook her head. "No, I just found your name very familiar," she explained. "As if I heard it in another life. Is that the device you need Elan to look at?"

The question shifted everyone's focus back on the reason why they were all here at this time. A'Janni quickly nodded his head as he handed over the meticulously engraved metallic box to Elan who immediately noticed that one of the corners was damaged.  "All right," the Oltharian said. "Let's take it back to my workshop and have a look at what we have here."

Setting:  OLTHAR PRIME, Talsera peninsula, Elan's workshop
Stardate: 34065.0835

For the first few days of their stay in this isolated paradise, Elan had done his best to keep this underground location a secret from Amber, but the truth was that she knew of its existence from the very beginning. As much as the Engineer and Robotic Expert wanted to be away from everything, his love for tinkering and fixing things was just too great for him to completely ignore. It was something that made him happy and as such, it was a small price to pay for them to be here, together.

As Elan worked on trying to figure out the box brought down by A'Janni, her gaze kept falling onto the Caitian without his or the Oltharian's knowledge. There was no way for her to explain this to either one of them, and to be honest she even found it difficult to explain it to herself. All she knew was that because of his presence here, things were about the drastically change for Elan and her.

"I am truly sorry," Elan said as he took a step back from the device. "As good as my equipment here may be, it is not by any means sufficient to allow me to help you repair whatever is broken inside this box. Even if I were able to get to the internal components, I am not convinced that I would be able to fix whatever is broken due to the complexity and density of what I was able to see. Whatever this OGRAAM is, it was not made to be tampered with by people who do not know what they are doing. Again, I am truly sorry that I was not able to assist you more than this."

"You did your best," A'Janni sadly admitted, "and for that I am grateful. I will return to the BASTET and leave you to your lives as they were before our arrival."

"Elan," Amber said looking straight at the Oltharian. "Is there nothing more you can do?"

"I tried everything that I could think of," the Engineering said. "Unfortunately, I am limited by my own equipment. When I had this workshop in mind, I never expected to be asked to do anything like this. I am sorry, I just do not have the equipment necessary to help you as you hoped I could," the Oltharian added not hiding his disappointment from the Caitian. "I wish you luck in your continued efforts to find a way to repair this device."

Apparently accepting his fate, A'Janni carefully and gently took hold of the OGRAAM and began to make his way out only to be stopped by Amber who grabbed his arm as she looked at Elan. "He needs you," she pleaded to her fiancée. "You and I both can see that this device is important to him in a way that cannot be easily explained. You are part of the solution he seeks, so sending him on his way will leave him faced with the same problem simply elsewhere."

"What do you want me to do?" Elan asked, not entirely certain as to what Amber was leading to.

"The equipment needed to repair this device is out there," Amber stated with a level of assurance that took both Elan and A'Janni by surprise. "As I said, you are one part of the solution he seeks, all we need to do is for you to be given access to the other part."

"That might not be that easily done," the Caitian pointed out. "The equipment that was used to create the OGRAAM can only be found on KZINTI ALPHA."

"I am not leaving OLTHAR PRIME!" The towering Engineer was adamant and clearly not in any mindset to consider any other course of action other than what he had already taken.  "I am sorry, but I cannot help you any more than I have."

"Elan!" Amber said as she moved to stand directly in front of the Oltharian giant. "You need to do this."

"Why?" The Engineer demanded, now more puzzled than ever before.

"I just have this feeling that this is what you were meant to do," Amber vaguely explained. "You will not be alone as I will go with you. I cannot explain why I believe that this is what you are meant to do, all that I can say is that when the universe has other plans for someone, there is nothing anyone can do to change this."

The Oltharian gazed deeply into the emerald green eyes of his fiancée. Elan knew Amber well enough to understand that she would not give up on this matter and that as important as the device was for the Caitian, his being part of the solution as she claimed was equally important to her. Faced with a losing scenario, the Engineer made his way to the nearest communication station.

[/\] Elan, we were not expecting to hear back from you, [/\] Captain Iverson said as soon as her face appeared on the small monitor.

"I was unable to repair the OGRAAM," the Oltharian said, taking a brief moment to look at A'Janni, the device he was holding and the woman who had made him change his mind as to what he needed to do next. "I do not have the necessary equipment to perform the repairs, but I am told that the equipment can be found on KZINTI ALPHA. If you are willing to take me and my fiancée there, I believe that I can repair the device in question."

[/\] That is a gracious offer, but I am not sure that it is possible. According to what A'Janni said, the planet has fallen into chaos following the murder of the ruling family. [/\]

"Captain," Elan began after drawing a long deep breath. "I believe that you coming here was not a random thing. I possess the knowledge but lack the equipment. if this item is as important as we all believe it to be, then there is but one option, The choice is yours of course, but I would ask that you consider my offer and request, not only as a former member of the NEW ALEXANDRIA team but also as a friend."

Captain Iverson took a moment to consider Fairborn's words before making her decision known to him and the others. [/\] All right, we will figure out how to get you and that device safely to KZINTI ALPHA while en route. You and your fiancée have permission to beam on board the BASTET, I look forward to seeing you. Iverson out. [/\]

"Thank you," A'Janni said, his voice filled with a hope that was not there before.

"I believe that your thank you should be directed to Amber," Elan said with a smile. "She was the one who pointed out that the universe appears to have other plans for us, and who am I to say no to the universe, especially when it presents itself in a form as charming as she is."

"My sweet Elan, you are as charming as you are sweet. Now, let us pack some essentials for our journey."

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA (currently on the USS BASTET with his fiancée)
M11-P018: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34065.1000 ("Plan of Action")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Plan of Action"
[previous post (ANU) "Jolan-Tru" / (BAS) "When The Universe Has Other Plans")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 34065.1000

"Are you certain that this is a good idea?" The Executive Officer asked of the Captain. "Responding to a Priority Black emergency and rescuing A'Jannie and the Grand Duke was one thing, I'll even grant you that Sofia doing what she did to save Krayss was part of that deal, but we have already gone beyond the call of duty, and our heading to KZINTI ALPHA was never part of that of it."

"I understand your objection," Iverson said. "I even agree with it, on some level, but there is more at stake here than saving two lives."

"There is always more at stake," Sarena countered sounding almost upset. "Every time we faced the Lokustaar, there was always more at stake than just finding a way for us to get out of there in one piece. The problem here is that we actually have no concrete evidence of what that it is we are getting ourselves into."

"The Kzinti are members of the Federation, and if they ask for our assistance, are we supposed to just say no?" The Captain offered.

"They have not officially asked for our help, or for the help of anyone for that matter," the Executive Officer pointed out. "It was A'Janni who triggered the Priority Black emergency, and I believe that we have fulfilled the requirements of that protocol and then some. I know that the Grand Duke could be easily enough convinced to make a formal request for help as the last surviving member of the ruling family of KZINTI ALPHA, but that would take this matter out of our hands."

"Would it?" Iverson challenged. "It is likely that the Federation Council would launch an official investigation while at the same time ask for Starfleet Intelligence to look into the events that happened, just to make sure that whatever diplomatic team is sent there would have all of the information they require. Since A'Janni is a member of the NEW ALEXANDRIA staff, I am relatively certain that Admiral Koniki would make sure that this investigation ran through him. That said, you are right in that this whole story could end up not being ours to deal with. We could go back home and sit around waiting to be properly debriefed about our dealings with the Lokustaar not to mention giving a detailed account of everything else that happened, including on ELYSIA. If we are lucky, we might get all of that done in two, maybe three months."

The Captain could see that her Executive Officer was carefully considering everything that had just been said to her. Yes, they could opt to wash their hands of this situation, but the price for that decision would likely be them being sidelined for quite some time. As much as Sarena knew how much the crew wanted to return home, she also understood their need for being active and useful, especially after the unsettling ease of their stay on the paradise world of ELYSIA.  "So, what is our plan of action?"

"Gather as much information as we can," Iverson replied glad to see that Valentine had accepted their situation, even if only because the other options were even less appealing. "We need to have A'Janni tell us *everything* about this situation and the OGRAAM, and as soon as the Grand Duke is able to, he needs to also be interrogated. We might be heading for KZINTI ALPHA but there is nothing that says we can't change our mind if we consider the risks to be too great for the reward.  I would also be interested in knowing why Elan and Amber decided to join us instead of staying on OLTHAR PRIME. Don't get me wrong, I have no issues with them being here, I am just curious as to why they went from being so adamant about not leaving to being so accommodating to come here to help A'Janni and Krayss."

"I have already asked Doctor Andersson to speak to Elan," Valentine said. "As much as Gemma might be better at getting information out of people, based on everything we know about the Oltharians, I suspect that Sofia might have an easier time getting answers out of our guest. Counselor Dima was tasked with speaking with the Grand Duke as soon as he wakes. I hope that his near-death experience will make him more willing to talk to us.  I will personally speak with A'Jann and see if there is something more I can get out of him about all of this."

"Good," the Captain said turning her attention onto her display console. "This keeps Gemma free to do some research on KZINTI ALPHA. If we are going to be setting foot on that planet, it would be wise for us to have a clear idea of the political landscape we are going to be dealing with. Lt. Mitshiba should also perform a full scan of the planet and its system thus making sure that something unexpected does not surprise us. The one advantage we have now is that we can detect Lokustaar vessels, but I would still feel better if we approached the system with as good an idea as we can get."

"I will make sure that everyone is on tasks," the Executive Officer said, the smile on her face making it evident that she much preferred being in the middle of the action instead of sitting around and waiting to be debriefed. Whatever objections Sarena might have had about their unscheduled mission to KZINTI ALPHA, she found herself actually looking forward to seeing what would come from their little adventure into the world of tall, bipedal cat-like people.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P019: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 34065.1300 ("Back and Forth")
"Back and Forth"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Killing Time" & (BAS) "Plan of Action"

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4, Astrometrics Lab
Stardate: 34065.1300

From a planet located in another dimension, a world the crew had given the name of ELYSIA to because of its paradise-like attributes; they had found their way back home thanks in no small part to the assistance of the USS HAWKING. Although familiar stars now surrounded the BASTET, their return had yet to be celebrated not that Aki wanted a fanfare, but at least a small acknowledgment of their return would have been nice.

Instead, the crew was dragged into a political murder-mystery affair involving the Kzinti and a single undercover Caitian operative by the name of A'Janni. From there, the BASTET went to OLTHAR PRIME to pick up Elan Fairborn and his fiancée Amber Satori before making their way back to KZINT ALPHA. Thinking about everything they had done since their return, Aki was wondering if maybe it would not have been better for them to stay on ELYSIA.  Actually, the Asian CSciO liked being busy, but she would not have been against a few hours to enjoy being back in their home dimension. There would always be time for everyone to take a moment to relax once they resolved the issue with the OGRAAM and the murder of the royal family of KZINTI ALPHA.

Although they were still quite a good distance away from the KZINTI system, Aki was able to scan the planets and get a general idea of what they might encounter. Historical records indicated that following decades of internal conflicts triggered by the Kzinti joining the Federation, their society eventually reached a breaking point sending a large number of the population of KZIN out into space to colonize the other two habitable planets in their system. In order to avoid any misunderstanding, the planet from which the factions originated from was renamed KZINTI PRIME while the other two planetary colonies took on the unofficial names of KZINTI ALPHA and KZINTI BETA. Officially, only KZINTI PRIME is a member of the United Federation of planets leaving both the ALPHA and BETA colonies as unaligned, independent worlds with their respective governments. KZINTI PRIME is still ruled by a planetary council led by the High Kzin, while KZINTI BETA, according to the most recent available data, is ruled by whichever clan leader currently holds the title of Overlord, a title that is disputed by force whenever another clan leader believes themselves worthy to lead. Opting for a slightly more orderly type of government, KZINTI ALPHA was under the jurisdiction of a King supported by his royal court, at least that was until the entire royal course was murdered.

The mission of the BASTET, if one could actually call it that, was unclear at this time thanks to the veil of mystery that covered the entire affair. Somehow Grand Duke Krayss survived the culling of the royal court, taking with him an item that only added to the mystery. The OGRAAM was clearly something more than it appeared, something that Aki would have loved to investigate further, but for the time being her attention needed to be focused on the KZINTI System as per the orders of Commander Valentine.

Calling up a stellar map of the system in question, the CSciO could see the three planets in relation to each other along with various ships patrolling the area as if searching for someone, or something. Without any evidence to confirm what they were looking for, Aki could only speculate but her gut feeling told her that they were more after the OGRAAM than the Grand Duke. Unfortunately, this did not answer the question as to why the metallic box was so important to warrant the death of so many.

There was something else that caught the attention of the Asian CSciO, in addition to the ships patrolling the system, there was a group of ships following a direct path to and from KZINTI ALPHA and BETA. Normally, such a route would be expected between two neighboring planets, but given what had just transpired, Aki found this to be very odd, especially when she noticed that the transponder signal from all of the ships following that particular route identified them as being from KZINTI PRIME.

Something was not right, and by the looks of things the issue the BASTET was dealing with involved more than just one planet and its government. Was KZINTI PRIME offering help to the shattered world or were they taking advantage of the situation in order to reclaim one of its breakaway colonies? Given the speed and scale of their reaction to what had happened, the latter seemed far more likely. This only served to add another question to the mix; what role did KZINTI BETA play in this? If they had no role to play in what had transpired, why would the group of ships from KZINTI PRIME be moving back and forth between the two colonies?

Aki could only hope that Gemma and Nicole would have better luck in uncovering details that would allow them to peel back this veil of mystery and allow them to make more sense of what was currently taking place.

Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
M11-P020: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34065.1300 ("Identity Crisis")
"Identity Crisis"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Last But Not Least" / (BAS) "Back and Forth"]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34065.1300

Gemma was reviewing all of the available information on the KZINTI star system and its inhabited planets. There was so much data that the ILO was forced to use three stations at the back of the command deck. In a way, this proved to make things a little easier as each station was dedicated to one world. With a glance, she could see how certain details were constants between the worlds while others were completely different.

"It is amazing to see how the same race took such different paths," Wimda said. The Uxali scientist was mesmerized by how drastic the changes were between the three worlds. The KZINTI culture originated from one planet, and yet there were now three distinct cultures present in that system.

Her eyes darted from one monitor to the next in a way that almost made the woman appear as a machine. The woman's complete attention was on her research, ignoring everything and everyone around. Cmdr. Valentine wanted Intel and that is exactly what Gemma would give her. Every link between the Council of KZINTI PRIME, the Royal Court of KZINTI ALPHA and the Clan Leader of KZINTI BETA would be uncovered.

"The answers are in there somewhere," Gemma noted to herself. "It's only a matter of time for me to figure it out." To say that the ILO was driven would be a grave understatement. There was no reason why she was so determined, aside from maybe the need to see this mystery solved.

KZINTI PRIME, a planet known as KZIN before the 'Great Exodus' was the only planet to be part of the Federation. This meant that although a lot of information was available, the crew's ability to officially act there would be restricted. Anything they did on that planet could risk a diplomatic incident, so it was best to avoid dealing with that world and its government. KZINTI ALPHA and BETA, on the other hand, were independent worlds. This would give the BASTET much greater freedom to act as they saw fit. The question was what would they do?

News of the massacre of the royal family and court had already spread through the system. Everyone with any sort of invested interest in KZINTI ALPHA was scrambling to benefit from this atrocity. From intercepted transmissions, Gemma could tell that some were ready to move in. The vacuum of power left by the murders was an excellent opportunity that those in power could not ignore.  Whatever peace existed between the three worlds was gone, and it looked like the vultures were getting ready to dive in.

In the hopes of better understanding the current situation, Gemma decided to study the royal family. Their links to the other two planets might give a clue as to why the murders had taken place. It could also explain why A'Janni was sent as a Special Security Enjoy. Pictures of the world and its first buildings were called up on the monitor.

"From the very beginning they established a unique style," Lireen said in complete admiration. "You can see that they wanted to be looked upon as being their own people. The architecture is barely recognizable from what they left behind on KZIN." The blonde-haired Edo was thrilled by this discovery. To anyone else, this would not have been considered important, but to her, it was a find beyond description. The new style was enchanting and fluid, very much like what someone would expect a cat to be.

"We need to focus more on the people," Gwenvel said. The El-Aurian had a completely different set of priorities in this research. Understanding who the people were would give them far more clues than studying their architecture. A quick scan of the royal line provided some interesting facts. King Prexiss was a direct descendant of the leader who left their homeworld to colonize KZINTI ALPHA. The position of leadership had been passed down from father to son with every new generation. Even more interesting was the fact that from the very first King, each ruler was adored by his people.

Just as the Kings were loved, the chosen mates of the rulers were equally beloved. The people of KZINTI ALPHA had proven that, in their case, this type of government worked best for everyone. The people were happy and prospered while being under the guidance and protection of their King. Statues of Queen Sheetora were created to honor her and her many contributions to their society. The woman was admired by all, so much so that she often surpassed her husband in that regard.

Reading the long list of what Sheetora had done for her people, Finnja could not help but shed a few tears. Her murder was an act of cruelty without parallel, one that hinted to the darkness of the hearts of those who had done this. It became clear that her great popularity played a role in her demise. Killing the King would not have been enough to see KZINTI ALPHA fall into chaos. They needed to erase the entire royal family in order to achieve their goal.

Gemma sneered at the screen. The ILO was not in the least bit impressed. Such displays of emotions had no room in this kind of investigation. Results were all that mattered. Answers were what was needed. Crying over the death of someone, however important or kind they might have been served no purpose. Looking at the pictures of the queen and her litters, the Intel Operative noticed something. The item was barely visible thanks to being only partially in view, but it was there. Without saying anything, Gemma stood from her chair and rushed to the turbolift.

Setting: USS BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34065.1320

Gemma burst into the Infirmary, making her way to the Grand Duke without any hesitation. Nicole, who had been speaking with Krauss, was nearly pushed out of the way. The CMO was not given the time to ask what this was all about before the ILO addressed the patient.

"When were you going to tell us that the OGRAAM is a key?"

"A key?" Nicole asked.

"Yes, a key," Gemma said. "A genetically trigger key that is tailored to your family. You did everything you could to keep it a secret from everyone. The problem is that the OGRAAM is visible in every picture of your children. The Official records do not show how it works, but you can see that it is there at their birth. We were told that the device keeps a genetic record of the royal family, which it does. The truth though is that this record is used to unluck something, something important enough to warrant the death of the entire royal family. Someone wanted to make sure that no one could open it. What I want to know is *what* is it?"

Knowing that he could no longer keep this secret, Krayss closed his eyes in defeat. "An item with the power of giving glimpses into the future was discovered by the first King. He quickly understood its power and vowed to keep it safe. His goal was to use it only in times of need and to ensure the safety of his people. The OGRAAM was created to safeguard the relic."

Nicole gasped. "It allowed the King to see into the future? How come it did not warn him of the attack against his entire family?"

"It did," Gemma said with a sigh. "That is why A'Janni was sent to KZINTI ALPHA as a Special Security Enjoy. My guess is that everyone underestimated the scale of the attack."

"Prexiss saw his own death," Krayss explained. "He wanted to make sure that Sheetora and his children were safe. He accepted that his time was coming to an end. All he wanted was to make sure that the rest of his family would be alright. I do not know how the relic works, all I know is that what the King saw was only a fraction of what took place."

"By the time he realized what was happening, it was already too late. The attack against the royal court was in progress and everyone was dying." Gemma was trying to remain professional, but her emotions were threatening to overwhelm her. Somehow, because of everything she read, everything she saw, the ILO felt personally touched by this.

"Prexiss was my friend and I would have given my life for him." The Grand Duke could not hide his feelings any longer. The pain and sadness of what happened were too much.

"The sadness you feel is not because you lost a friend or even a king," Gwenvel said. The Kzinti Grand Duke not noticing the appearance of the El-Aurian Counselor. His eyes were tightly closed as if trying to shield himself from the harsh reality that had come to be. "You feel the loss of your sister far more because, somehow, you believe yourself to be responsible for her death."

"I am responsible," Krayss cried out opening his eyes to see someone he had never expected to see. "I should have been there, by her side, to protect her.

"You are not responsible," a Kzinti woman softly said. "I am not dead," she added surprising the Grand Duke and Ship's Counselor.

"Sheetora?!? HOW!!! That's impossible, you are DEAD."

"Counselor Dima to Captain Iverson," Nicole said quickly tapping her communicator. "I believe that your presence is going to be required in the Infirmary. Sooner rather than later. We have a new personality to deal with, and by the looks of things, it's the Queen of KZINTI ALPHA."

=/\= I am on my way. =/\=

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P021: USS BASTET: Andersson: 34065.1325 ("From Peace to Chaos")
"From Peace to Chaos"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Last But Not Least" by Rachel / (BAS) "Identity Crisis" by Rachel]

Setting: BASTET, Deck 5, Guest Quarters
Stardate: 34065.1325

This was nice. Here she was, sitting in the living area of the BASTET's guest quarters talking to a lovely couple. Elan and Amber were sweet, each possessing an odd charm that seemed to perfectly complement the other. Sofia could not help but smile as she was pampered by both, the two of them showing her a level of respect that she was not accustomed to. As the Chief Medical Officer, the other members of the crew did respect her as a professional, but the way they acted and even spoke to her made her feel like royalty.  The way the gentle giant continuously referred to her as 'Healer' was something the CMO could quickly get used to.

=/\= Captain Iverson to Doctor Andersson, report to the Infirmary immediately. =/\=

"Is there something we can do to help?" Amber Satori asked, the offer coming across as completely genuine and not just a bid to volunteer that was silently hoped would not be accepted. "When a Captain calls this way, it is never a good sign," the woman added clearly speaking from experience.

"That you for the offer," Sofia said already halfway to the door. "If I do end up needing help, I will make sure to let you both know."

"Be safe Healer," Elan offered as the door opened to allow Sofia to exit into the corridor. How someone the size of the Oltharian could sound as gentle as he did was beyond the physician's understanding, but it ensured that she would call upon them, should there be any sort of need.

Setting: BASTET, Deck 5, Infirmary
Stardate: 34065.1330

Thanks to the fact that the quarters assigned to Elan and Amber were on the same deck as the Infirmary, Sofia responded to the Captain's call in record time. As soon as the Doctor entered the room, she immediately understood that something was not right. The Grand Duke was beyond agitated, the only thing keeping the imposing Kzinti man from stepping down from the medical bed being the combined and desperate efforts of her friend the Counselor and that of their Captain.

"What happened?" Andersson asked as she quickly rushed in to help keep the Grand Duke on the bed.

"Not what, who!" Nicole said pointing with a quick movement of her head to one of the corners where a female Kzinti was standing apparently terrified by the Grand Duke's reaction.  A thousand and one questions popped in Sofia's head but this was not the time for her to ask any of them, she needed to help and there was only one way to do that. Reaching for a hypospray, the CMO quickly injected the Kzinti male with a large dose of tranquilizer that took the fight out of him within seconds.

"I guess we were all very lucky that the Grand Duke was still relatively weak from his operation," Andersson said as she eased her patient's head back down on the pillow. "It does not appear that whatever this wrestling match was did any damage or opened up old wounds, but I would be curious as to why his reaction to her was so strong. Guess I should be asking *who* she is first?" Sofia cast an inquiring glare in the female Kzinti's direction; that was when the CMO noticed that the unknown woman was dressed in the uniform of a Starfleet Intel Liaison Officer possessing the same rank at Lieutenant Gemma.

"My name is Sheetora, daughter of Duke Nisstry, sister of Grand Duke Krayss, Queen and defender of the people of KZINTI ALPHA, wife to a murdered King and mother to my murdered children. My only two purposes in life are now to see those responsible for the atrocity against my family punished and to see the royal bloodline restored to the blood-soaked throne that has been theirs since the first day of our setting foot on what became *our* world."

"That pretty much explains everything," Nicole said as she rolled her eyes and rubbed the soreness from her arms. Although weakened by his life-saving operation, the Kzinti Grand Duke still possessed a strength that required the two officers' highest level of strength.

"Do we know what happened?" Sofia asked, obviously referring to the presence of the dead Queen whom she knew to actually be the ILO Gemma.

"Not specifically," the Captain replied. "One moment she was on the bridge researching all available information on the Kzinti, and then suddenly she left the bridge and made her way here to the Infirmary to confront Krayss. The problem, as I see it, is that this new personality is not going away. I expected Gemma or any of the other more physical identities to surface when the Grand Duke lashed out, but instead, she simply backed away in fear."

"Maybe she came across something traumatic when she discovered the true purpose of the OGRAAM," Nic proposed. "Clearly something happened to have her take on this new identity, something powerful enough to push all others back beyond their ability to regain control."

"This mission, if I can even call it that, is quickly reaching the point where I am seriously considering calling off our involvement in it," the Captain said, her frustration spilling into the open.

"You cannot," Sheetora pleaded. "The fate of my people depends on your involvement, on you helping us. Those responsible for what happened on my world are not going to stop until they get their hands on the relic, and they will not hesitate to kill everyone in order to do so. The fact that they killed my husband and my children along with everyone else who was in the palace should be proof enough of that."

"You two see what you can come up with," the Captain said to Nicole and Sofia. "I need to speak to Sarena and A'Janni before I make a final decision as to what we do next," Selene said as she made her way to the door stopping only to look at the Kzinti woman in order to speak with her. "You are to remain here, your *Highness*. If you want my help, you will not leave this room under any circumstance.

Dima and Andersson watched as Iverson stormed out of the Infirmary leaving them to deal with the situation. The two women looked at one another for a few seconds, as if debating what they needed to do next. It was Sofia who spoke next. "She's all yours as her *needs* fall clearly under your jurisdiction while those of the Grand Duke are without a doubt mine to be dealt with. I have to make sure that the struggle did not cause any rips or tears that would lead to internal bleeding or complications that could put his life at risk."

"Internal complications..." the Counselor mused while looking at the visibly concerned Kzinti woman. "If only it were that simple."

Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
M11-P022: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34065.1400 ("Figuring Things Out")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Figuring Things Out"
[previous post (ANU) "Madnness" / (BAS) "From Peace to Chaos")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 34065.1400

After what had taken place in the Infirmary, both the Captain and Executive Officer wanted to get a better idea of what they needed to do next, hence why a staff meeting was called. Although not part of the official crew, the Oltharian Robotics Engineer, as well as his fiancée, were invited to attend, both having the clearance and invested interests required to be included in the discussion.

As soon as everyone was seated, the Captain turned her attention to the CMO and got things started. "How is your patient, Doctor?"

"The Grand Duke is stable and more importantly sedated," said Satella as all eyes fell onto her. "The struggle to keep him from leaving his bed did not aggravate his condition or caused any new internal injuries, so there are no problems there. I cannot say the same in regards to his mental state though as I suspect that things are not going to be so easy when he wakes up. As far as he is concerned, he saw his dead sister alive and well standing in the same room that he was in. As good as Nicole is in her role as Ship's Counselor, I doubt that she is going to be able to convince him that what he saw was nothing more than a dream or a hallucination. Especially if *she* is still here."

The gazes of the gathered personnel slowly turned onto the seat at the far end of the table where the Kzinti woman targeted by the Doctor's last words was sitting. Sheetora appeared puzzled and maybe even a little confused, sentiments that could easily be seen in the faces of everyone else present in the room.

Recognizing that this could become very awkward, Miss Satori stood from her chair and offered a friendly hand to the feline-featured female.  "How about we let the officers do what they do best while we go for a walk? I am sure that whatever we end up talking about is going to be much more interesting than anything they will be discussing."

Sheetora hesitated for a moment but soon agreed, accepting the hand offered in friendship by a woman she found herself trusting even though the Kzinti did not know at all.  The gathered officer waited for the two ladies to exit before resuming the meeting.

"There is clearly something wrong with Gemma," said Dima. "We have all seen her switch from one personality to the next as the situation required, but she actually looked out of place right now."

"According to the computer logs of the stations she was using, Gemma was performing in-depth research on the royal family of KZINTI ALPHA. The last files accessed dealt with Sheetora, from her early years to her being courted by the then Prince Prexiss until a few days before her demise. I quickly scanned the dossiers in questions but could not find anything that could explain why she is locked in that personality," Misaki explained.

"This is Gemma we are talking about," said Nicole. "Do we truly understand how her mind works? We can only guess that she read something that caused this sudden and more permanent switch, and even if we did know what caused it we would not have any clue as to figure out how long this might last.  Right now, we may be an ILO short for this mission."

"I do not know how useful your ILO might have been during this mission," the Caitian added. "What I do know is that having someone able to pass as Sheetora could prove to be exceptionally useful. Those responsible for the attack against the royal family will not be able to ignore the possibility that she could have survived. We could use that to our advantage to draw them out."

"A bold plan," said Selene. "Crazy but bold. Those responsible managed to kill almost everyone in the royal palace, it is there prudent to consider them as being heavily organized and well equipped. Even if we did manage to get Gemma to be accepted as Sheetora, it is unlikely that we would be able to ward off another attempt."

"We have to try," A'Janni pointed out with force. "If those responsible are unable to reach the relic, they may very well turn their frustration against the people of KZINTI ALPHA. At least with Sheetora on the planet, their attention will be on her instead of on everyone else. That could give us the maneuvering room we need to retrieve the relic before it is discovered and used to drastically shift the balance of power in this system.  There is no way to know how dangerous being able to see into the future could be."

"Trust me when I say this," Sarena sighed. "If there is one crew in Starfleet that understands how dangerous dealing with time can be, we are it." The Executive Officer stopped and turned her attention back onto the Captain. "What do you think? Can we risk using Gemma the way she is? What if she suddenly changes back."

"Actually," Selene said almost grinning. "If Gemma came back, I would see that as a step in the right direction, but right now we have to deal with the cards we have been given.  We still have a few hours before we reach KZINTI ALPHA, let us make the best of that time. Doctor Andersson, keep an eye on Krayss and keep him sedated for as long as possible. We do not need to add to our list of problems. That said, Counselor Dima, I would appreciate if you could try to figure out how stable Gemma is. I realize that I may be asking quite a bit but try to see if you can figure out why she took on this new personality and if it is going to be with us for any amount of time.  The rest of us will start working on a plan to locate and secure the artifact using the OGRAAM." The Captain paused and met everyone's eyes with her own. "If there no questions, let us get to work."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P023: USS BASTET: Fairborn: 34065.1405 ("The Curse of Knowledge")
"The Curse of Knowledge"
Previous posts (ANU) "Rescued" / (BAS) "Figuring Things Out"

"Obtaining knowledge is one thing, understanding that knowledge is a completely different matter. I could tell you exactly when you are to die, but without understanding why this will happen, that specific knowledge would be meaningless. Therefore, the key is not to seek knowledge, but rather understanding."
- Okwein Tarlk, Author of 'The memoirs of Time'

Setting:  USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34065.1405

Until only recently, Amber Satori was a being without a set lifespan. She was there at the birth of the Shillian civilization and was also there to morns its loss several thousands of years later.  She witnessed firsthand the creation of the Oltharian cast system that later became to her silent joy the Scientific and Religious Circles. The universe as a whole was a place of wonder for her to explore, not as a single entity but rather as the place where countless individual lives unfolded independently from one another until such time as paths crossed and destinies were either created or forever altered.  With such a unique perspective on the universe, the auburn-haired woman took Sheetora's hands into her own in a way that expressed a level of sympathy that went beyond anyone's ability to describe.

"Everything will be all right," Amber said doing her best to reassure the Kzinti woman who appeared very troubled.

"How could it ever be 'all right'?" Sheetora demanded, her voice cracking under the weight of her emotions. The anger she felt and should have displayed instead came across as a desperate and saddened acknowledgment of her own inability to change what had come to pass. "My husband is dead, as are my children. The royal line of KZINTI ALPHA is gone and there is nothing I can do, be it now or ever, to change this. Unparalleled darkness has befallen my family, my people, and the world I loved and called home."

Amber ever so gently nodded her head before leading the feline-featured woman to the turbolift. "Come, I want you to see something."

Setting:  USS BASTET, Deck 4, Astrometrics Lab
Stardate: 34065.1410

The two women entered the Astrometrics Laboratory, Amber making her way straight to the controls without letting go of the woman who had been forced to follow. With a few presses of the controls, Satori made the world of KZINTI ALPHA appear on the holographic display.

"Why are you showing me this?" Sheetora asked, easily recognizing the planet she knew as her home.

"Simple, because I know you to be stronger than what you claimed to be back on the bridge," Satori said, giving the Kzinti woman's hand a gentle squeeze. "A battle is only lost when you believe it to be so. As long as you believe that a victory can be reached, as long as you hold on to the hopes of this victory, the battle is never lost."

"My grandmother used to say the exact same claiming thing, claiming that this wisdom was passed on to her by a traveler who identified themselves as nothing more than a distant relative," Sheetora said. "That story even made the official records of our world because she believed it to be important enough to be immortalized. Have you read those historical records?"

"No, I have not read them," Amber gently admitted, her voice as smooth and calming as that of a seasoned Counsellor. "I have heard those words before, spoken by someone in a similar situation and because of that, I understand the profound meaning of those specific words. You are here, now, and that should be enough for you to accept that this battle is far from over. You need to believe in yourself and just how important a single person can be in shaping the universe."

Setting:  USS BASTET, Turbolift
Stardate: 34065.1415

Following the end of the meeting, Elan and Nicole emerged from the Observation Lounge each searching for half of the pair that left the room earlier. A quick query from the computer sent them both heading to the Astrometrics Lab.

"I'm concerned about her," Nicole said voicing her thoughts aloud.

"I would not worry about Amber," the Oltharian offered. "I have come to see over the years that she is more than capable of taking care of herself."

"I was referring to Gemma," the Counsellor clarified. "I understand that Amber may be your fiancée, but your concerns should not be for her alone.

"My deepest apologies Healer," the gentle giant said adding a deep bow of respect. "You are absolutely right about Gemma, but it is because I know Amber that I find myself less inclined to be concerned about your ILO. Amber has repeatedly proven herself quite capable of helping anyone she sets her mind to, and given the way she reached out to your Intelligence Liaison Officer, I would say that she made a choice to help to the fullest extent of her capabilities."

The trill smiled. What could a woman like Amber Satori do that could help any of them in a situation like the one they were faced with?

Setting:  USS BASTET, Deck 4, Astrometrics Lab
Stardate: 34065.1420

"Elan!" Amber exclaimed with joy as she saw the Oltharian and Trill walk into the room.  As expected, the gentle giant made his way to his fiancée while the Counsellor headed straight to Gemma who was still displaying the feline features of the dead Queen of KZINTI ALPHA.

"Everything will be all right," the auburn-haired woman said, wrapping her arms around the Oltharian's right arm while casting her gaze back onto the Kzinti and Trill.  Elan could do nothing else but look down upon the woman he loved recognizing the way she had said those very simple words. To everyone else, the statement would have been nothing more than an announcement of hope, but in truth, those words reflected a knowledge that only she could possess, a knowledge that the Robotics Engineer knew better than to ask about.  Experience, as well as his love for her, offered him but a single course of action when she began to speak like this -- acceptance, complete and absolute.

"What should we do now?" Elan inquired in a whispered voice of the woman who was tightly and lovingly holding on to him.

"Now, we head to this ship's medical center," Amber announced matching the Oltharian's soft-spoken tone. "Sheetora needs to do a couple of things before she can be ready to do what is to be required of her."

"Why do I have the feeling that you already know how this is going to end?" Elan sighed with a smile.

"My sweetest Elan, you always believe me to be more than I am, especially now. Remember, I gave up all of my powers, so the person that is here with you is all that I am and all that I will ever be. Even before, I could never have predicted how anything would come to pass. All I can do is believe that this battle is far from over and to make sure that she believes it as well," Amber explained pointing with a quick glance at the Kzinti woman.

"Then, let us head to the Infirmary," the Oltharian agreed, trusting the woman on his arm with not only his life but the fate of the entire universe if it came down to it, knowing better than to doubt her in any way.

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA (currently on the USS BASTET with his fiancée)
M11-P024: USS BASTET: Andersson: 34065.1430 ("Adapting")
[the previous post was (ANU) "Rescued" by moi / (BAS) "The Curse of Knowledge" by Francois]

Setting: USS BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34065.1430 

Life on a starship was one of constant change, one day never being the same as the one prior. One moment, the crew of the BASTET was fighting the Lokustaar and the next they found themselves stranded on a paradise planet in another dimension with no hope of returning home. Now they were back surrounded by familiar stars looking at helping the Grand Duke of KZINTI ALPHA to safeguard a coveted artifact, one so valuable that those who desired had massacred the entire royal family; King, Queen, and their children along with anyone else who had the misfortune of being there when this tragedy took place.

Looking at the peacefully resting Grand Duke, Sofia could barely imagine what the Kzinti was feeling. Seeing Gemma appearing and sounding like his dead sister could not have been easy, and this was only the start. Now that Captain Iverson and Commander Valentine agreed that this latest personality shift of their ILO might prove useful, Krayss would have to deal with not only seeing but also interacting with a Queen that was no more.

Certain situations proved to be much easier to adapt to than others, and this one would push the bar to its absolute limit. The crew of the BASTET was not only trained to deal with the strange and unexpected but thanks to the unique properties of their ship, they had a fair deal of experience in adjusting to things that most could not even begin to imagine. It seemed that this latest mission would be no different in that regard.

Andersson heard the door to the Infirmary hiss open, but before she could turn around to see who was coming in, a single word was spoken to make her immediately know who it was. "Healer?"

"Hello Elan," Sofia said, smiling. There was something truly enchanting about the way the giant addressed her and every other member of the medical department. If this was a common daily occurrence, it would likely get on her nerves, but the occasional encounters with the Oltharian made his unique mannerism even more endearing. As she looked at the door, the CMO was actually surprised to see that the towering man was not alone. "Is it wise to have her here?"

"We had to," Amber said, the woman taking charge in a way that Sofia had not expected her to. "Could we use one of your medical stations? We need to research something that can only be accessed through the medical access granted to your department."

The physician simply waved the woman to one of the stations and watched with puzzlement as Gemma followed Amber without saying a word.  "What's going on?" Sofia asked of her friend, never taking her eyes off the auburn-haired woman.

"I am not entirely certain," Nic admitted. "The best I can figure out is that Miss Satori is actually helping Gemma embrace this new personality to its fullest potential. If we are going to use her in an attempt to trick those responsible for the massacre, it would be a good idea to make sure our Sheetora is as close to the real deal as possible. The problem is that we have never seen Gemma take on the personality of someone real. Everything we have seen, every personality that we have dealt with appears to be her subconscious way to adapt to specific situations. I guess the same could be said for this one, but then why is it not Za'Ran who is here wanting to infiltrate the palace, or Anya ready to kill anyone that gets in her way? I would have even accepted Ema being here to mourn the deaths of the members of the royal family. Why take on a completely new personality, one that was directly involved with what happened? It makes no sense."

"As much as we both hate to admit it, there is a great deal we do not know or understand about Gemma and the way her mind and body works," Sofia sighed. "We know that her mind is beyond fractured and that the nanites in her body react to this be physically representing the personality that is on one currently in charge. Evidently something happened while she read the file on the Kzinti royal family. Maybe there was something about Sheetora that hit a nerve and triggered this."

"If I may," Elan interjected. "It would seem that there is little else for you to do than to trust the fact that you are all doing the best you can. Trust in each other including Amber, I do."

Trust was not something either woman was quick to just give, but somehow the words of the Oltharian made it just that much easier for them to accept that Amber was part of the solution of this strange and unorthodox situation.  "Even if we do trust your fiancée to help, it will take more than psychological coaching to make sure Gemma can pass as Sheetora. A simple biological scan is going to show her to be someone other than the Queen," Sofia explained. "Gemma's nanites project a bioelectric field that mimics the race of the personality, in this case identifying her as just another Kzinti is not going to be enough."

"I believe that we have successfully addressed this issue," Amber said as she and the Kzinti woman returned prompting Doctor Andersson to reach for the nearest medical tricorder. Nicole just watched as her friend scanned Gemma over and over again as if confirming that the information being displayed was actually the truth.

"Well?" Nicole prompted Sofia. "What does your scan say?"

"It's a perfect match to what is on record for Sheetora," the Doctor said.

"Of course it is," the Kzinti woman pointed out. "Who else did you expect those readings to belong to?"

Grabbing the Trill by the arm, the physician dragged the Counselor into her office so that they could talk more privately, leaving Gemma in the care of Amber and Elan. "This is nuts," Sofia exclaimed. "The readings are a *perfect* match. If I did not know that it was Gemma who took on the form and personality of Sheetora, I would not be able to tell that she is not the genuine article. I have always suspected that the nanites that are coursing through Gemma are based on Borg technology, but I never expected to be able to do this."

"There might be some of Gemma in there, influencing these changes," Nic theorized. "We may never know, but according to what you have just said, I would say that we are one step closer to making this work. What I am concerned about the most is not the mission to get the artifact or even if Gemma can successfully pass as Sheetora, but rather how Krayss is going to adapt to this. His sister is dead, this is a fact that he is still struggling to come to terms with, and now we are going to have him deal with a woman who believes herself to be her. With each passing moment, Gemma's confidence in this new personality is growing to the point where she will challenge anyone who claims otherwise, just as she did you when you scanned her."

Sofia let out a long slow breath as she looked through the transparent glass at the Kzinti woman they were talking about. This was not going to be easy, and the number of obstacles was likely going to multiply exponentially as things progressed. All they could do was to prepare as best they could in order to adapt to whatever craziness they would be encountering during this mission.

Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
M11-P025: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34065.1615 ("A Matter of Pride")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"A Matter of Pride"
[previous post (ANU) "Rescued" / (BAS) "Adapting")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34065.1615

KZINTI ALPHA appeared in all of its majestic charms on the main view screen, the gathered officer taking a brief moment to gaze onto the world before they dove into the mess that was to be their mission there. The Executive Officer turned her attention onto the BASTET's former ILO who now appeared as a very alive and determined murdered Queen. The first time Sarena saw Sheetora, aka Gemma, the Kzinti woman appeared sad, meek and unsure. Now, a few hours later, the same woman came across as confident as could be, projecting an air of royalty that was impossible to miss or ignore. Even the clothing worn by her reflected a position of importance and commanded respect.

Would this be enough?

Doctor Andersson along with Counselor Dima had gone on record stating their concerns while at the same time pointing out that the ILO had taken on this new personality to such an extreme that they both believed she would be able to pass without any problem as that world's Queen. Even A'Janni seemed to have accepted the woman for whom she claimed to be, everything about her being exactly as it should be. All they needed to do now was to use this to their advantage and draw out those responsible in order to stop them from getting the artifact to which the OGRAAM was the key.

Sarena turned her attention onto the other strange woman to currently be on board the BASTET. As strange as it was to deal with Sheetora, everyone knew who she was beneath the new appearance and personality. The same could not be said about Miss Amber Satori, the woman was even more of a mystery, and this one without the slightest clue to help the crew understand who or what she actually was. It was only because of her relationship with the Oltharian that they accepted her without question, at least without voicing those questions they had. The woman appeared to possess knowledge that went well beyond anything she should have possessed and carried herself in a manner that hinted to the same. Captain Iverson clearly trusted Elan and in turn, the giant visibly trusted Amber implicitly.

As much as Valentine would have loved to get to the bottom of that particular mystery, the BASTET and its crew had more pressing and urgent matters to attend to, so there was no choice but to trust what was being said and done and instead focus on completing this mission and stop those responsible for the murder of the royal family from getting their paws on an item that would drastically shift the balance of power in this region of space.

Needing to think about something else, the Executive Officer turned to the Chief Science Officer and asked, "Have the planetary sensors been able to get a lock on us?"

"No," Misaki quickly answered but delayed saying anything more for fear that she might be revealing things that should not be while their guests were on the bridge.

"It would be difficult for anyone to get a sensor lock on this ship, especially while using the D-Drive to alter the energy frequency of the shields," the Oltharian said indicating that not only was he aware of the BASTET's special equipment but that he also understood how it operated.

"The problem is that it also greatly hinders the accuracy and resolution of our own sensors," the Chief Science Officer continued, no longer fearing saying something that she was not supposed to.

"Your Chief Engineer should be able to use a dimensional phase-shift adjuster to solve that problem," Elan said. "It might not restore your sensors to their full resolution, but it would most certainly increase them to be closer to normal than they are at the present."

"Unfortunately, the BASTET is currently without the services of a Chief Engineering Officer," Captain Iverson pointed out. "Lieutenant Gemma has been filling in that role, at least in some capacity." The CO wanted to explain in more detail that it was one of the ILO's alternate personalities that had taken on that responsibility, but right now was not the time for this. It was enough to deal with the Sheetora personality without talking about any other and risking them to make an unexpected appearance at this time.

"I would be happy to help if you would permit it," Elan offered.

Sarena stepped in. "As much as your offer is greatly appreciated, your skills and expertise are right now required to make sure the OGRAAM works as it was intended in order to give us access to the device we are her to retrieve."

"That is where I come in," the Grand Duke said after stepping out of the turbolift accompanied by A'Janni. "I know exactly where the secured room is, and I could take you there with my eyes closed. I am just not sure that your plan will work," Krayss added glaring at the woman who appeared as his sister, a woman he knew to be dead.

Sheetora, or at least the woman who now believed herself to be her, approached the Grand Duke and stood toes to toe with him. "A battle is only lost when you believe it to be so," she said quoting the line that Satori had said and which was claimed to have been said by the Kzinti's grandmother. "Have you accepted defeat brother? I have never known you to give up, no matter the odds."

It was Counselor Dima's turn to step in. "I understand how difficult this must be for you, and I will not even try to explain how we have come to be here as we all are. What I can say to you is this, we need your help. Getting us to the vault is only one part, we believe that we have what is required to use the OGRAAM as the key it was meant to be, but we also need your help in making sure that she can convince everyone that she *is* Sheetora. Being her brother, you possess information that no one else has, information that could be used against us."

"This is not about me," Sheetora said, her pleading voice still managing to sound like that of a ruler. "We are doing this to save our people. I am not asking you to agree with this plan, I am only asking for your help to ensure that the people of KZINTI ALPHA have the future they deserve."

The Grand Duke was visibly torn but, in the end, he had no other option but to agree with the woman who he found increasingly more difficult to believe was not his sister. "Fine. Captain, can we use a more private setting, I would prefer that no one else hears what I have to say."

Selene nodded. "Of course, my Ready Room is yours."

Silence took over the bridge as everyone watched with great interest the Queen follow the Grand Duke into the office of the Commanding Officer, the man going as far as to bow and invite the woman to step in first before him.

"Looks like he is accepting her as Sheetora," Doctor Andersson said.

Counselor Dima leaned in. "Accepting might be too strong of a word at this time, I would be more inclined to say that he is confused and unsure, allowing his grief and feelings to cloud his reactions. In his mind, he knows that she is not who she appears to be, but his heart wants her to be the person he sees, the person he hears, even if only for a few seconds. Sheetora was more than his sister, and even more than his Queen, she represents everything that was and could have been. Unless he is given a reason to doubt her, he will accept to help, maybe even to a point where he will forget that she is not the real Sheetora."

"This whole thing will only go from bad to worse," the Executive Officer said. "We are not the crew that deals with the simple linear missions. It is what we do, we go where we are needed, face impossible situations that no one else could even come close to imagining and we somehow figure a way out. The problem is that this way out is not always the way we would like things to go, and I have a strange feeling that this is what is going to happen here. We are still dealing with a lot of unknowns, like who was responsible for the massacre? Now, add to this that it is our ILO who has suffered a complete psychological break that is the key to making this plan work and we are left with a situation that cannot unfold smoothly."

It was the Caitian's turn to voice his opinion. "They will make it work, somehow," A'Janni said. "Krayss was never one to give up and always found a way to make things work, and when his sister was involved, he was even more driven.  He will make it work, it's a matter of pride."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P026: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34065.1630 ("Fraudulent Authenticity")
"Fraudulent Authenticity"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Rescued" / (BAS) "A Matter of Pride"]

Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 34065.1630

She could tell that there was something wrong. As brother and sister, the two of them had never been close, that was a matter of public record. He accepted that his younger sister had become his Queen and honored her as such. He had never wanted to be the Grand Duke, but it was her insistence that forced his hand. At the ceremony, she made a point to make it known that the title was his because of their family relationship. Sheetora also made a point to make it known that she trusted him to do everything he could to protect everyone.  The population of KZINTI ALPHA effortlessly accepted this, celebrating the appointment just as they had the coronation of their Queen.

Maybe that was part of the reason for his emotional distance. The situation was difficult, and he needed to focus on their subjects, not just his baby sister. That was the only way she could explain why he was speaking to her the way he was. Cold. Distant. As if she was some sort of stranger whom he did not fully trust. Yet, he spoke of details of their childhoods, details that no other soul should ever hear.

She reached for his paw, delicately taking his into hers. "Krayss? What is wrong?"

He looked back at her, for the first time staring straight into her eyes. She could see the emotions swelling within him but could not figure out why. Was his mourning her husband and children more than she herself was? "We need to continue this," he said dryly while pulling his hand away. "You need to be ready for when we return to KZINTI ALPHA." His gaze was now cast onto the planet visible through the office's window. At least that way she could not see the confusion he felt or the pain and sorrow he was fighting to hold back.

Sheetora was taken aback by his words. "I am ready," she claimed with complete assurance. "You have always been overprotective. You were always the stronger one, the faster one and believed it your responsibility to protect us. I was ready when we left our home following the flood. I was ready when the tribes of KZINTI BETA tried to claim our world as theirs. I was ready when Prexiss asked me to become his Queen. I can assure you that I am ready to go back and do what is required to protect our people."

Krayss turned to look at Sheetora. He knew that this was not his sister, that she was merely an imposter, but he could not help himself. The sound of her words, the tone of her voice, even the way she stood with her hands on her hips. If he had not been told otherwise, he would have accepted her as the person she appeared to be.

"Essiss would be proud of you," Krays said before allowing a faint and uneasy smile to form on his lips.

Sheetora rolled her eyes and let out a sigh of exasperation. "Essiss was incapable of pride. I still do not understand why you selected him as one of your aides. Yes, I know that he was a good friend, but he was more interested in meeting higher class women than actually helping you. He was able to enjoy a life that he would never have been able to without you. Trust me, I heard enough about his efforts to charm my maids to know him, maybe even better than you did."

The smile on the Grand Duke changed to a full one that now filled his face. "You are ready. Now, we need to figure out how we are going to reach the vault without too many problems."

"I am grateful for all of the help the people of this ship have provided. We would not be able to do this without them, but this is not their place or their battle." Sheetora stood tall, confident in her own words, as a Queen should. This made Krayss nod his head, remembering all of the previous times she had given a similar speech. His sister could always manage to rally people to her cause by simply addressing them. She was the Queen of the people and looking at the woman before him, he understood how they felt. "You and I have no choice but to go. This is our fight for our people. We should also bring A'Janni with us, being a Caitian will not make him appear out of place. An extra set of muscles might come in handy if we run into any trouble. To ensure that the odds are in our favor though, no one else should come down with us. We need to keep this small and with only one specific goal."

"I agree with your highness," Krayss said before suddenly pausing as he heard his own words. That he wanted to or not, that he liked it or not, he accepted her as who she appeared. "We should also bring the Oltharian. His size alone might be enough to make anyone thinking of attacking reconsider.  Also, he is the only one capable of making sure that the OGRAAM works. We could claim that following what took place, an additional bodyguard was required."

"It is strange that you said that. Amber told me that I would need him at some point while on KZINTI ALPHA. Maybe it is his destiny to accompany us," Sheetora said, smiling. "Let us regroup with the others and inform them of our plan. The quicker we go down, the quicker we can get this situation resolved and ensure that our people are safe."

Most would have focus on seeking revenge after what had happened. This was not the Queen's way, it never was. She was always about her people and their safety. Seeing the imposter play the role to such perfection the Grand Duke wondered. Could it possibly be that Sheetora had not died the way he was led to believe? Did the crew of this ship make up this elaborate story to protect her? Even if the woman standing before him was not his sister, he felt the need to protect her as if she was. If he was not protecting the real Queen, at least he would be protecting her copy in honor of her memory.

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P027: USS BASTET: Andersson: 34065.1700 ("Queen's Gambit")
"Queen's Gambit"
[the previous post was (ANU) "You Know You Are In Trouble When..." by moi / (BAS) "Fraudulent Authenticity" by Rachel]

Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room
Stardate: 34065.1700 

Everyone had come to the transporter room, well, maybe not everyone but it sure felt like it. Sofia stood right next to the transporter platform alongside Nicole, trying to stay out of everyone's way while the CMO was firmly holding onto her medical tricorder. The not-so-subtle efforts of the physician to get a scan of their ILO would have more than likely been noticed under normal circumstances, but there was very little about any of this that could be considered *normal*.

"She really is taking this new role seriously," the joint Trill quietly noted while looking at the K'Zinti woman whom the members of the crew knew as Lt. Gemma.

"Taking this seriously is an understatement," Andersson whispered back as she studied the results of her latest medical scan of the woman in question. "All of her biological readouts are a perfect match to those of the K'Zinti Queen at the time of her latest medical examination. If I did not know that this was Gemma hiding within this new personality, I would have to officially go on record as to everything pointing to that woman *being* Sheetora. There are even traces of her broken leg, an injury she suffered as a child."

"Talk about a 'Queen's Gambit," Nicole half grinned.

"After everything we have been through, I never knew you played chess?" Sofia smiled as she turned to look at Nicole.

"You know as well as I do that a woman never reveals all of her secrets," the Trill woman teased. "We have to keep some of the mystery alive, something that is not always easy."

"Wait! What? You are keeping secrets from me?"

"It would be difficult for me to surprise you if I did not," Nicole said, ginning and adding a wink. "Also, don't play the wounded, I know that you have been keeping secrets from me as well. Keeping secrets is not such a bad thing. People, in general, tend to associate secrets as being a bad thing, but they are not always that. Keeping a certain desire hidden from someone else can heighten the exchange between those two people and make its reveal that much more meaningful."

"Maybe so, but I think it is safe to say that Gemma has us both beat on the keeping secrets platform," the blonde-haired physician chuckled. "Secrets are nothing to an ILO, and ours embodies this to the fullest possible extent, so much so that I am relatively certain that she has secrets that even she doesn't know about." Sofia paused as she heard her own words. "That came out wrong, I meant..."

"I know what you meant," Nicole offered while nodding her head. "You believe that each personality may have secrets that other personalities are unaware of," the Counselor explained making it evident that she had followed the line of thinking used by the Doctor.  "The worst part of it all is that I have to agree with you. I also have the feeling that this latest secret is going to be one that some of the other personalities are going to have issues with, if not now, at some point in the near future."

"Why do you believe that?" Sofia asked, understanding that this was likely from a more psychological perspective than a medical one.

"Through our observation of Gemma and all of her personalities, we know that a specific identity surfaces when its particular skills or interests are needed. Anytime something scientifically odd crosses our path, Wimda appears and when we need someone with a gift in engineering, Gabrielle is right there. Something about how and why Sheetora came to be made her take such a solid hold of Gemma that none of the other personalities trapped in her head have even come close to making their presence known. This may be a good thing at the moment, as it avoids us having to deal with any of the others, but what will happen when this mission is over? Will Sheetora simply step down and allow Gemma to resurface or will the taste of being the Queen of an entire planet be too much for her to overcome?"

"I never thought of that," the physician admitted as she watched the woman in question step onto the transporter platform followed by Grand Duke Krayss. "Guess we have no other choice but to wait and see how this mission turns out first. There is no real way for any of us to know how having Sheetora 'return from the dead' is going to affect things. Thanks to her new personality, Gemma might be able to secure the OGRAAM but that does not mean that the mission is going to be a success."

"Agreed," Nicole said. "Someone on KZINTI ALPHA went through a lot of trouble to take out the ruling family and it is highly unlikely that they will allow even the thought of her return go unchallenged."

"Well, at least they won't be alone," Andersson noted while looking at the two imposing figures who were going to be beaming down with them. "Just having Elan and A'Janni next to them should help. They both look like they were born to be bodyguards."

"Unfortunately, appearances can be misleading, and in this case, I am afraid that they are even more of an issue," Dima said, a hint of concern hanging in her words. "A'Janni is still fighting his own uncertainties and insecurities after what he believes to be his failure in protecting the royal family. Elan, according to his Starfleet personnel file, is the epitome of a gentle giant. It is beyond his ability to hurt someone, even when his life or that of someone he cares for is at stake."

"Maybe that is what Amber is reminding Elan of," Sofia said looking at the couple standing on the other side of the room, the two of them apparently having a very serious and passionate discussion.

"The discussion between them does appear to be a little more than a simple reminder," Nicole pointed out. "This mission might be facing its first problems even before the beam down."

Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
M11-P028: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34065.1710 ("Unlikely Allies")
"Unlikely Allies"
[previous (ANU) "You Know You Are In Trouble When..." / (BAS) "Queen's Gambit"]]

Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room
Stardate: 34065.1710 

The concept of time came to a complete stop for the Caitian as he cast his gaze around the room and onto those there. The gathering of officers in the transporter room should have made things overly busy and noisy, but somehow A'Janni found a way to rise about this gentle chaos. Except for him, everyone else was in pairs, discussing various aspects of what had come to pass, what was happening and most importantly what might take place.

Captain Iverson and Commander Valentine stood behind the transporter control station, the two women whispering to one another as their gaze moved across the room, stopping momentarily on each person. It was easy for A'Janni to imagine the conversation between them as they questioned the sanity of their actions. It was very likely that no other ship or crew would have accepted this mission, one that placed the resources of a ragtag team directly against the darkness that had claimed KZINTI ALPHA, claiming the lives of the entire royal family in the process. What made things even more surprising was that the Caitian was a willing part of that team.

The Grand Duke gave a distinct impression that he was not entirely certain about this mission, or at least some aspects of it, but he accepted that this was the only way available for him to push back this darkness and allow the legacy of his sister and husband to continue. That the dead Queen stood right next to him did not make things any easier, but again Krayss appeared to have accepted the situation as best he could. Maybe it was because he saw the woman known as Gemma as the only way for them to secure the OGRAAM or maybe it was because the brother wanted to believe that his sister was actually there, by his side.

Shifting his gaze onto the blue-skinned giant, A'Janni understood the idea of having the Oltharian join them. His imposing size alone would make it less likely that some single attacker would dare to try and reach the Queen. The problem with that was that with a man of his size, it would be impossible for the team to even try a covert approach. Then again, that was part of the Grand Duke's plan; how else were they supposed to draw out those responsible for the massacre?  How much of an asset Elan Fairborn would prove to be also seemed to depend on his fiancée. The petite woman in comparison to the giant seemed rather agitated as she spoke to him, the couple standing as far away from the others as the transporter room allowed. The Caitian could tell that they were disagreeing about something, but that was it leaving the Special Security Envoy to wonder if this had anything to do with the mission or if it was nothing more than a lover's quarrel.

The last pair to catch the Caitian's eyes was the CMO and CNS, the two women standing right next to the transporter platform observing everyone else in as much a professional manner as they could. From where he stood, A'Janni could see that the Doctor was performing covert scans of the Intel Operative using the medical tricorder she was trying to keep out of sight. Maybe she was making sure that operative's vitals were as they needed them to be, that of Queen Sheetora, or maybe the CMO was concerned about some other medical aspect. All that the Caitian knew was that both women seemed to focus the greater part of their deliberations on one single person in the room, taking the occasional break to instead focus on the couple standing on the other side of the room.

As if the universe had decided that he had wasted enough time with his observations, things quickly returned to a more normal pace forcing the Caitian to do more than simply standing there. Taking a deep breath to summon his strength and courage, A'Janni turned to face the Grand Duke and then the Intel Operative posing at the Queen before he stepped onto the transporter platform. "Thank you for allowing me to be part of this," the Caitian said.

"There is no need to thank us, my friend," Krayss said in return.

"We are honored to having you with us on this mission to see peace and prosperity restored to my people," Sheetora said, the woman sounding exactly as the Queen did. "I know that the Kzinti and Caitian have not always been the best of friends and allies, but I cannot think of anyone else I would rather have by our side on this mission. You saved my brother's life and in doing so proved your loyalty to me, and for that, I will forever be grateful. That you have chosen to help us once again only proves that you are a worthy ally that is why I have no hesitation in trusting you with not only our lives but also the future of my people."
A'Janni and Krayss exchanged a quick glance. The woman did not only look exactly like the Queen, but she also sounded like her. Every word, every intonation was perfect, so much so that both the Grand Duke and Special Security Enjoy had to silently remind themselves of what they knew to be true. The real Sheetora was dead, as was her husband the King and all of their children. This mission was not to see this Queen sit on the thrown but to secure a precious device and hopefully by the same token see those responsible for what had taken place punished to the fullest of their abilities.

"I cannot promise you that our mission will be successful," A'Janni said, bowing to the woman who had taken on the identity of the Queen so perfectly. He could feel her presence and found himself feeling the same way as he did before, considering her to be more than the Queen she was to her people. To the Catian, she was a dear friend, one that he felt immeasurable guilt in not having been able to protect as he should have the first time around. "What I can promise you here and now is that I will do everything that I can to help you in your quest, even if it means to give up my life."

"Let us hope that it will not come to that, my friend," the Grand Duke said before turning his gaze onto the Oltharian to silently urge him to end whatever conversation he was in the middle of so that he could join them on this crazy mission.

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P029: USS BASTET: Dima: 34065.1735 ("Origin Stories")
("Origin Stories")
[Previous Posts: (ANU) "Doubts, Dread, and Danger"/ (BAS) "Unlikely Allies"]

Setting: USS BASTET, Personal Holodeck 1
Stardate: 34065.1735

Aki took a hesitant breath as she approached the Counselor's location. After the away team departed, it seemed as though Nicole had quickly disappeared. The Science Officer had wanted to discuss the latest changes in their ILO, and bounce off of her any theories that would explain her transformation into Queen Sheetora. Mitshiba had started her search in the Infirmary; nine times out of ten she would have found the petite Trill there. But, not this time. However, Mitshiba did find Sofia, who was working on updating her reports, and the blonde quickly offered the whereabouts of Nicole's 'secret thinking spot' with a smile.

Aki did not wish to interrupt anything, but armed with this information, her curiosity and natural need to uncover answers drove her forward. Finding no security barrier or lock on the door, she felt a little better as she crossed the threshold into a nature scene.

It was a verdant wooded area with a clearing. The trees provided a pleasant lacy canopy for the sun-dappled glade. There were a few outcroppings of rocks and boulders, big enough to sit on, but Aki couldn't see any mountains in the distance.

There was the sound of a stream somewhere off to the left, and since there appeared to be an opening in that direction, She followed the soothing noise.

It wasn't long before she found Dima, sitting in the grass near the edge of the clean, trickling water, her legs crossed and her eyes closed as if in deep thought.

Aki wondered how to greet the woman without startling her, but before she had a chance, Nicole's eyes opened. She wasn't scared, but she did seem a little suprised that it wasn't Sofia that had come for her. "What brings you here?"

"I was going to ask the same question."

Nicole shrugged. "I figured I had a small amount of time before the away team reached the crucial part of their mission. I was... unprepared for what happened with Gemma and the Grand Duke." A troubled look fell across her face.

"I would say we all were," Aki admitted, sitting down next to the joined Trill. Their surroundings looked idyllic, but also like an M-Class planet. "Where are we?" she asked.

Nicole grinned broadly, waving her hand with a flourish. "Welcome to Sherwood Forest."

The Asian woman cast a glance around. They were alone. "No Robin Hood? No Sheriff?"

"I figured we had enough on our plates without adding robbing from the rich to help the poor, and then being chased by the authorities" Nicole joked. "And right now I'm not a Merry Man."

Mitshiba leaned in. "Are you worried about Gemma?"

Nic struggled to find the right words. "Not worried in the literal sense. Concerned that we can't predict what she's going to do or who she will become. You're a Scientist. You're well aware of the dangers of using empirical data. And I guess that's what I was doing with her, without realizing it."

"How so?"

"After Sophia's study of the nannites which are responsible for Gemma's rapid and complete changes to each persona, I always thought that the different identites were somehow still a part of Gemma, like facets on a diamond. Similar to studies of multiple personality disorder," Dima explained.

"But Sheertora is- or was, a real individual."

"Exactly. As if they weren't already fascinating enough to interact with, I now face the possibility that these are real people, not just elaborate creations."

"And all Gemma had to do was research the Queen's profile and it was enough to allow her to transform," Aki added. She understood why Dima was puzzled.

"To top it off, Gemma could access our profiles and duty records easily, but as far as I know she has never 'become' one of us. Does she have to make some kind of emotional connection with those that she becomes? Does she only turn into people who are not immediately present? How does it happen?"

"I am not sure that Science has an answer for this," Aki said, as Nicole mirrored some of the same thoughts that the CSciO had.

Susan Ledbetter
Writing for

M11-P030: USS BASTET: Fairborn: 34065.1745 ("A Universe of Wonder")
"A Universe of Wonder"
Previous posts (ANU) "Doubts, Dreed and Danger" / (BAS) "Origin Stories"

"To some, the universe is something vast and mysterious beyond explanation; to others, it is an imperfect void that means nothing beyond what they see of it; but to those few who know what to look for, the universe is a place of endless wonder and powerful magic. Whatever you believe it to be, you simply need to remember one thing above all others -- in this universe, nothing is impossible."
- Attributed to a very old and wise man encountered on many different worlds who goes by various names including Merklyn of PRYMOS, Drall of the EPSILON ERIDANI and most notably Merlin of EARTH.

Setting:  KZINTI ALPHA, Courtyard outside the Royal Palace
Stardate: 34065.1745

Due to a protective force field surrounding the Royal Palace, the away team was forced to beam down well outside the structure under the cover of whatever vegetation they were able to find. While the Kzinti Grand Duke conferred with the Caitian Special Security Envoy as to their best course of action, the Oltharian remained several steps back, hiding as best he could while thinking back to the conversations Amber and he shared.

Back on OLTHAR PRIME, Amber had been adamant about her not wanting for him to leave, claiming that if he did the odds were great that he would get swept into some wild adventure that would take him away from him home for an extended period of time. It was because of this that the former Engineer and Robotics Expert had agreed to help only if the item he was asked to look at was brought to him.  Something changed when Amber saw A'Janni, at least that is the best and only way the gentle giant could explain what happened as his fiancé's stand underwent a full 180-degree turn.

From that point on, Amber wanted Elan to help more than she had convinced him to prior. The idea of remaining on OLTHAR PRIME was summarily dismissed in favour of seeing them both join the crew of the USS BASTET in order to see the OGRAAM restored in order to ensure that the Royal lineage of the planet's ruling family was preserved. If all of that had not been strange enough, the last discussion the couple shared in the transporter room just before his beaming down with the others raised even more questions in the mind of the Oltharian.

Amber had wished her fiancé well as he expected her to do and the request for him to make sure that Sheetora remained safe did not surprise him, but what she said after puzzled the gentle giant. Why would she tell him to not follow the others and instead allow his curiosity to lead his steps once they would gain access to the royal palace? Did she know something that the others did not, and if so, how could that be possible?

After discovering that Amber had been a near-immortal being before sacrificing her longevity in order to save Ambassador's Bonviva's life, the Oltharian understood how she had come to know so many things about his people amongst countless other things. Her knowledge seemed to stretch into the distant past and as long as he accepted this, he could find a way to justify her words of caution. This time though things were clearly different as she cautioned him about something that had yet to take place. No amount of knowledge from the past could explain her words to him, at least not in any way that he could comprehend.

"You seemed puzzled," the Queen said making Elan look into the Kzinti woman's eyes for several seconds before reminding himself that this was not Sheetora but rather the BASTET's ILO Gemma who had taken on both her form and identity. Still, the Oltharian felt drawn to the Kzinti woman who made it clear to everyone that she was not here to seek revenge but to ensure the future well-being of her people.

"Just thinking about my role in this mission," Elan cautiously explained, trying to keep his answer vague as to not say something that might prove exceptionally difficult to explain, especially given that he could not do so even to himself let alone someone else.

"All Kzinti, no matter what world they live on, strongly believe in personal instincts," the woman said in a way that made it even more difficult for Elan to see her as someone other than the kind and wise Queen she appeared to be. "We teach our cubs from a very early age to listen to their inner voice. Those teachings begin with making them aware of this voice and its insights into the world around them. I remember doing that with my cubs," Sheetora continued only to pause as a wave of deep sadness threatened to overtake her, forcing her to change the subject. "Some members of my race would like to believe that this voice is something unique to our people, but I know that it is not. Therefore, I know that you and everyone else on board that ship you were on have such a voice, a voice that you may choose to ignore or listen to when times are at their most difficult. I do not know what is troubling you, but what I can tell you is to listen to your inner voice. It is always better to listen than to ignore it, as I fear too many people did before that fateful night that saw my entire family taken from me."

Elan offered a gentle smile as he reached for the woman's hands in order to take them into his; easily making the woman's dainty yet strong hands vanish into his caring hold.  Channeling his earlier teachings of the Religious Circle, he offered his thoughts. "Like your belief of instinct and of this inner voice, I know that what I am about to say echoes the beliefs of countless other people and races. As long as those you loved are in your memories and heart, they are never truly gone."

"Thank you," Sheetora offered. "I hope that my words proved as comforting as yours have been to me."

The Oltharian smiled and nodded yes. Maybe Amber's words were not a premonition of sorts but rather her saying out loud what her inner voice had said. Now Elan found himself listening to his own inner voice, accepting everything he had heard without any further need to try and understanding it. There were still things in this universe that he did not need to understand or even question.

"All right you two," A'Janni whispered to draw their attention back onto the two warriors leading the away team. "We have figure out a way to get inside the palace without being seen by the sentries. Are you ready to go?"  Elan and Sheetora replied silently with a nod of their heads. "Good, let's go!"

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA (currently on the USS BASTET with his fiancée)
M11-P031: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34065.1815 ("Unsettling Feelings")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Unsettling Feelings"
[previous post (ANU) "Doubts, Dread and Danger" / (BAS) "A Universe of Wonder")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34065.1815

With the away team gone, those that remained on the BASTET found themselves with little else to do other than wait to see what would happen next. Thanks to the visual and sensor disruption field generated by the temporal and dimensional drives, the ship was as invisible as they could make it be. The problem was that thanks to the protective force field surrounding the royal palace, the ship's sensors were just as ineffective at seeing the progress of their own people.

In similar situations, the Executive Officer would have spent some time discussing various possible scenarios with their resident ILO, the problem was that Gemma was not around for her to do this. Sarena had grown accustomed to the woman being elsewhere on the BASTET as one of her other personas, usually being in engineering as Gabrielle Wolf or in one of the Science Labs as Wimda. Instead, the multi-faceted woman was completely out of reach on KZINTI ALPHA following her taking on the identity of that world's murdered Queen.

Sarena tried her best to convince herself that this had been their good fortune at work, as Gemma's new identity would make the mission a great deal easier, that was of course as long as they managed to reach the chamber where the OGRAAM needed to be in. The ILO taking on the identity of the Queen also allowed the away team to draw out those responsible by making them believe they had failed to wipe out the whole of the royal family. Needless to say that this presented the away team with more than just a few risks but the Grand Duke believed the plow essential in order to ensure the restoration of the ruling family to its rightful place. How this would come to be Valentine was not entirely certain, but with things already well underway it was no longer the time or place to start asking such questions. Obviously, Krayss had a plan and nothing would deter him from seeing it through.

"Any news?" Captain Iverson asked as she stepped out of the turbolift to find the Executive Officer standing in the middle of the command deck.

"In orbit, all is quiet," Sarena reported. "The KZINTI PATROLS have not been able to spot us. The BASTET is registering as nothing more than a spatial anomaly that they seem to be more than happy to stay away from."

"What about the away team?" Selene asked, hoping that Sarena's first reply meant that there was something to report from the surface.

"Nothing," the Executive Officer said, sounding disappointed. "We are monitoring the local communication networks for any indications that something is going on, but so far we have heard nothing that would hint that the away team has even been spotted. Guess we have to go with the idea of 'no news is good news'."

The Captain let out a sigh before approaching the still standing Commander. "I would like to agree with you, I really would, but we both know that silence is not always a good sign.  I doubt that those responsible for the initial attack on the royal family would openly broadcast their failure by claiming they have seen the Queen and her entourage. It is far more likely that they would act quickly to correct the situation as if nothing had happened."

"At least this time, Grand Duke Krayss and Lieutenant A'Janni are ready for a fight," Sarena pointed out. "I would also like t to believe that having Gemma down there with them has shifted the odds back in their favor. We both know that the woman can fight and take care of herself during the most demanding and difficult of times."

"Gemma, yes," Selene agreed. "Anya Petrov, most certainly," the Captain added. "I am sure that there are also several more personalities hiding within her that could prove you right without any issues, but the problem is that none of them are down there. Everything we have seen, everything we had to deal with since our ILO taking on the Queen's identity seems to point to this change being more permanent than any of the others before. I have the unsettling feeling that when the away team runs into trouble, which is a near certainty, there won't be anyone else replacing Sheetora. As skilled as the KZinti woman may be, I am afraid that she cannot be compared to any of the more combat savvy personalities Gemma has shown us to have."

As much as she did not want to, the Executive Office had no other choice but to agree with the Captain's assessment of the situation. There was something oddly different about how Gemma took on the identity of the murdered Queen, something that no one could quite understand. Never before had they seen the ILO take on the identity of someone real, and that alone raised more questions than anyone cared to address.

The sound of a repeating tone accompanied by a small flashing indicator at one of the bridge's stations drew both women's attention. Sarena was the first to reach the console and see the reason for the quiet alarm. "Well, whatever the away team was planning on doing, they better get to it quickly. We just intercepted a communication stating that four intruders have been found in the royal palace. Their description fits the away team perfectly except for one, Sheetora. She has been simply identified as a 'Kzinti female' and nothing more."

"They are calling for reinforcements without letting people know that they suspect the Queen might be one of the four intruders as it could possibly trigger a counter-retaliation by those loyal to the ruling family," the Captain said clearly wishing that their sensors would be able to give them more information than what little they had at the moment.

"Was it not Krayss' plan to actually make sure everyone knew that the Queen was there?" the Executive Officer asked.

"That is what he said," the Captain confirmed.

"We might not be able to directly help them, but we could make sure that the plan he had unfolds as closely as possible to what he had imagined," Sarena suggested.

"That's easy enough for us to do. The question is will it actually help the away team achieve their mission or will it only make things worse?" Selene was clearly concerned about doing something that would put them away team in even more danger than they were already in.

"There is nothing more dangerous than going into a situation that you are not prepared for," Valentine said justifying her position. "Krayss, A'Janni, Sheetora, and Elan went down expecting people to know that the Queen had returned, likely needing to use the chaos that the news would create to give them the flexibility to reach their target. As long as no one knows that the Queen might be back in the palace, the conflict will only be one way."

"Point taken," Iverson said smiling before reaching down to the controls and performing a quick modification to the intercepted transmission. "There, this should get the attention of a lot more people."

"It did," Sarena said as she monitored the continued exchanges on the communication network. "Everyone is converging onto the palace. Now we just have to hope that the away team is ready to deal with the full chaos that we have just helped unleash."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P032: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34065.1820 ("Royal Rumble")
"Royal Rumble"
[previous (ANU) "Elegant Equation" / (BAS) "Unsettling Feelings"]]

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Inside the Royal Palace
Stardate: 34065.1820 

Gaining access to the royal palace was easy when compared to the fight they were going to face in order to stay inside. The moment the news of the Queen's return reached the communication network, all hell broke loose. The supporters of the beloved Royal family rushed to the palace to see for themselves if this was true while those involved directly or indirectly in the massacre came to deal with what they were certain was an imposter.

It did not take long for the away team to be confronted by those who wanted to see the Queen stay dead, and this time on a more permanent basis. Luckily, those wanting to protect the monarch proved to be just as quick and whatever they lack in weapons they made up in sheer numbers. Judging by some of the reactions of the latter group, some believed that the Queen had survived the initial attack and was back to exact her revenge for the murder of her husband and children. Others were making claims that she had somehow returned from the dead to unleash an apocalyptic wrath the likes of which had never been seen or even imagined by their people.

As grateful as A'Janni was to have so many fighting by their side, the Caitian could hardly believe what he was hearing wondering if these people actually knew who their Queen was. From the first day, when he met Prexiss and Sheetora, the Special Security Envoy knew that she was a loving and caring passionate person who cared for everyone, that they supported her or not. As the mate to the King and ruler, she understood that not everyone would like her, but that had never bothered or stopped her. What truly and completely surprised the Caitian was that he could see those exact same traits in the woman currently standing by his side, a woman who was not Sheetora despite appearing and acting exactly the way she did.

"I thought this was supposed to be a covert entry and that my presence would discourage physical confrontations," the giant Oltharian said while easily holding one of the attackers away from him at arms' length.

"I would not complain," the Grand Duke said as he knocked another attacker clear off his feet with a powerful swing of his arm. "To be perfectly honest, I was not sure we would be able to make this far. I was concerned that the news of the Queen's return might not make it out and create the chaos we needed and that we are presently surrounded by."

"My guess is that the BASTET might have had something to do with that," A'Janni said. Although he was not a member of the crew, he understood the way such a vessel operated enough to imagine how they could have acted to ensure that this chaos took place providing the away team with the distraction they needed.

"Can we please hurry up," the Queen requested, the force of her words tempered with heavy pain. "I do not want my people to suffer unnecessarily. The quicker we get to the vault, the quicker we can use the OGRAAM and restore peace."

"Always thinking of your people first," Krayss said as he glanced back at the Queen. "As you wish your Highness," the Grand Duke said forgetting for a moment that the woman he was speaking to was neither his sister or his Queen.

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Inside the Royal Palace, Lower Levels
Stardate: 34065.1845

The deeper the away team pushed into the palace, the more resistance they encountered due to the simple fact that the greater majority of the Queen's supporters were not aware of the existence of these corridors and levels.  The latest fight gave no other option to the Kzinti Grand Duke and Caitian Special Security Enjoy in using deadly force. The half dozen assassins sent against them clearly had only one goal in mind and cared nothing about who got in their way.

Kneeling next to one of the dispatched assassins, the Queen appeared stricken with sorrow, caressing the man's face with a tenderness that he certainly did not deserve.  "Did you truly need to kill him?"

"With all due respect your Highness," A'Janni said, speaking first. "It was either them or us. I understand that you feel the loss of one of your race, he might have been Kzinti in appearance and even by blood, but his heart and soul were not that of *your* people."

Krayss growled before forcefully continuing. "The King was killed by people like him, traitors to the royal family and everything that generations of rulers have managed to accomplish on this planet. They did not think twice in killing *everyone* and it was evident that they would not have hesitated to kill you had we given them the slightest chance. You need to keep things in perspective, these cowards are a disgrace to the prides of KZINTI ALPHA, and death was a merciful end to their miserable existences."

"I believe it would be best if we continued," the Oltharian said, his calm and peaceful voice smoothing this just enough for the others to remember why they were here. "There will be plenty of time to mourn those who are no longer here once we have completed our mission."

"Elan is right," A'Janni said, offering a helping hand to Sheetora so that she could return to her feet. "We still have a fair amount of ground to cover and likely more adversaries to get through."

Reluctantly, Sheetora nodded her hand, accepted the hand that had been offered and returned to her feet, glancing at the dead assassins one last time before being ushered by Elan to follow Krayss and A'Janni.

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Inside the Royal Palace, Lower Levels, Corridor leading to the ‘Vault’
Stardate: 34065.1900

They were finally here. After quite a trek and more fighting than any of them would have cared for, the away team was where they needed to be.  The corridor they were in stretch almost as far as the eyes could see with only a few scattered doors lining the walls, but the one that mattered was the absolute last one, a door that stood apart from the other by both its size and appearance.

Holding back the Queen who had already taken a couple steps lead, Krayss spoke. “You are the key to us entering the vault. The responsible know this and I would not be surprised if they took the time to set traps to make sure no one would be able to enter. Therefore, your Highness, it would be safer if you let A’Janni and I go first.”

“I am not letting you face this by yourselves,” the Queen said unhappily. “We are all in this together.”

“Maybe so,” the Grand Duke said looking at the giant standing behind Sheetora, “but it was not a suggestion. Keep her here and safe until we have cleared the way.”

Elan agreed and placed a single hand on the woman’s shoulder, easily stopping her from following the others as she wanted to do. “I understand that you are afraid of losing more of your people,” the Oltharian said. “I also understand that both of them mean a great deal to you. What you need to understand that they are doing this because you and what you represent mean a great deal to them. Do not fight them on this, they are doing their best to protect you and save as many of your people as they can.”

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P033: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34065.1910 ("Another Life")
"Another Life"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Elegant Equation" / (BAS) "Royal Rumble"]

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Inside the Royal Palace, Lower Levels, Corridor leading to the ‘Vault’
Stardate: 34065.1910

She was the Queen, and as such, she believed that it was her responsibility to lead. Yes, the OGRAAM was genetically keyed to her, making her safety the one and only priority. That did not stop Sheetora from wanting to be there with Krayss and A'Janni. They were doing all of this for her and she did not like being a mere spectator. On the other hand, her desire to not hurt any of her people did make things more difficult for everyone. If this was some sort of a trap as the Grand Duke believed it to be, how much help would she actually be?

Sheetora found herself struggling with her own emotions and desires. This inner conflict displayed itself through faint movements of her body. Every time she went against Elan's powerful yet gentle hold on her, the Oltharian smiled. He knew that she could not break free, at least not without a fight. His strength was many times hers but that was not the only thing he possessed in greater quantity. The Queen recognized the ways of absolute pacifism the giant adhered to. In every single fight the team had gone through, he had not injured a single opponent. This was a trait that she could have easily used against him. In fact, there were strange and distance voices in her head compelling her to do just that. Instead, she simply admired him for his conviction and strength of character. There was a part of her that believed him worthy of the same respect all other Kzinti were entitled to by blood.

She looked up into his white eyes after feeling his fingers ever so gently squeeze her shoulder. The two of them shared a moment of silence. One begging to be let go while the other quietly denying the request.

"They will be alright." Elan's words of reassurance were meant to calm Sheetora. He knew little about either one of the men, but still, his words found a sympathetic ear. In an effort to take the Queen's focus away from the others, the Oltharian asked. "What are these symbols on the doors?" He made sure to point at the marking to further draw the woman's attention to them. "I had very little time to review the Kzinti language. I managed to commit to memory only the most basics of this written language. There is a certain logical flow to how it is written. That is one reason why I find these markings so strange. They do not appear to be KZINTI in origin."

Sheetora hesitated in taking her eyes off Krayss and A'Janni. They were risking their lives for her, so it seemed unfair to not give them her complete and undivided attention. After a few seconds though, she decided to accept the Oltharian's efforts. If something were to happen, they would not be far. This would also give the Queen the chance to calm her thoughts in preparation for using the OGRAAM.  "You are correct, those symbols are not part of the KZINTI language," she explained. "They were carved into these doors and walls for as long as anyone can remember. Some claim them to be ancient tribal markings meant to call forth good fortune. Some went as far as to say that they are mythical symbols possessing special magical properties. I remember my grandmother speaking about them with awe. They hold a unique and specific meaning in our mythology. The fact that no one actually knows what they are is part of their charm."

Elan looked at the much smaller woman with a hint of puzzlement. He knew who she was and that the knowledge she referred to was not her own. Yet, the way she spoke made him believe that she had experienced all of these things first-hand. What further troubled the giant was that the symbols they were talking about actually appeared very familiar to the Oltharian.  He had hoped that he would be given something to explain this. A reason to account for why the marking he remembered seeing on his own world had found their way here. He was the first of his people to venture into space. He was the only one of his people to have traveled to other worlds. So how could markings from his home have come to be carved into the walls and doors of this palace?

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P034: USS BASTET: Fairborn: 34065.1915 ("One Word")
"One Word"
Previous posts (ANU) "Elegant Equation" / (BAS) "Another Life"

"One word can change the course of history."
- Professor Aika Amser, Starfleet Academy, Advance studies in Temporal Mechanics

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Inside the Royal Palace, Lower Levels, Corridor leading to the ‘Vault’
Stardate: 34065.1915

As puzzled as the gentle giant was by the woman by his side and her apparent knowledge of things he knew she could not have experienced, his questions were squarely directed at the origins of the carvings on the walls and doors. To say that those markings were familiar would have been a huge understatement as the Oltharian recognized them to be words written in his mother tongue, but how could that be possible? How could a language that had never left a world be found on another planet?

Elan had hoped that Sheetora's explanation as to what these markings mean to the Kzinti people would explain how words written in his language had come to be inscribed here, in the lower levels of the royal palace of KZINTI ALPHA. At first, the Engineer and Robotics Expert would have accepted the possibility, as unlikely as it might have been, that the symbols had only appeared to be words from his home word while actually meaning something completely different here. A coincidence beyond mathematical odds would still have been more feasible rather than him trying to accept that a few random Oltharian words had found there a way to this place.  His bafflement grew even more when his eyes stopped on the marking of one particular door.  Unable to maintain his silence in view of this discovery, the giant asked, "What is in there?"

The Kzinti woman looked up at the Oltharian to make sure as to what he was referring to before offering a reply. "That door leads to one of the dozen or so power generators that supply energy to the palace and all of its systems including the defensive grip. They were set in various locations throughout the palace to increase the odds that one or more would continue working should some be damaged or even sabotaged. Why?"

The Oltharian declined to answer, instead, he focused and studied the marking on the door, a set of lines and shapes that he was all too familiar with as they represented his name. Elan's attention was pulled away from this bewildering mystery when screams of agonizing pain were heard coming from the far end of the lengthy corridor Krayss and A'Janni had ventured down into. Quickly reacting to the developing scene, the Engineer grabbed the Queen ensuring that she would not rush in and join the other two in whatever trouble they were now in.

"Looks like they triggered some sort of cascading energy field," Elan pointed out. "Judging by the rapidly increasing visible fluctuations, my guess is that the field will build up to an explosion. The problem is that there is no way to know how big that explosion will be, the more the field's intensity increases, the greater the resulting explosion will be. My guess though is that the energy itself is going to fry A'Janni and Krayss long before the explosion occurs."

"We have to save them," Sheetora tearfully pleaded while desperately fighting against the Olhtarian's hold, the thought of losing her two closest allies being more than she could bear at this time. "Let me go! I have to help them, I cannot let them die like this."

Shocked by what he was seeing and hearing, Elan ever so slightly released his hold on her arm but it was enough for Sheetora to slip free and immediately rush towards the others as quickly as she could. Of course, the Oltharian's initial reaction was to follow and see if there was something he might be able to do to help, but as he recalled Amber's last words to him while in the BASTET's transporter room, the gentle giant decided to instead act in a way that was completely against his character. Rather than following the Queen, he opted to break through the door upon which his name had been carved into.

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Inside the Royal Palace, Lower Levels, "Elan's" Room
Stardate: 34065.1920

Thanks to his size and strength, the door proved to not be a challenge for the Oltharian, knocking it out of its frame with relative ease. The moment he stepped into the room, Elan was surprised by the towering size of the power generator that stood before him, the structure extending several stories in height. The machine appeared powerful enough to address the entire palace's energy needs but according to Sheetora this was one of a dozen or so. What could all of these generators be needed for? Of course, there was no time to address that question leaving Fairborn to try and find a solution to his immediate problem.

If this generator was supplying power to the energy field the others were trapped inside, which the Engineer strongly believed, the resulting explosion would most certainly destroy the palace and everything within it and lay waste to anything within a kilometer radius if not more. It appeared that those responsible or the attack against the royal family had set up a doomsday trap in case their initial plan failed. The advantage of this gruesome discovery was that this gave Elan the time he needed to come up with a way to stop this before it was too late. Building to such an energy level would require time, granted not all that much, but more than he would have had the trap been meant to simply kill those trying o reach the vault.

It was easy for the Engineer to see that there was no way for him to stop the cascading effect, as it would only lead to reducing the strength of the explosion which would still result in the deaths of those currently present. The only way he could see to avoid the palace's destruction and the demise of all those inside was to redirect the energy out into space.  Working as quickly as he could, the Oltharian forced the generator into a directed overload, channeling all available energy through the palace's structure in order to redirect it outward. Once in space, the energy would be able to safely dissipate saving everyone's lives in the process.

When he was about ready to put his plan into action, another wave of agonizing screams was heard, this time from all three people trapped with the field. It was clear that there was no more time and Elan needed to act now, so he did. The moment he threw the switch the whole palace began to shake as if a massive earthquake had just hit, at the same time the air became charged with an eerie energy that caused Elan to feel light-headed and disoriented. That feeling persisted even after the lights went out, plunging everything and everyone in complete darkness. As he waited to see what would happen next, the Oltharian felt a massive wave descend upon him, knocking him to the ground leaving him barely conscious.

Since no explosion was felt or heard, Elan could only assume that his plan had worked, but the Engineer would only be able to confirm the level of success achieved after he would wake up. Despite his strength and greatest efforts, the shockwave proved to be too much for the Oltharian giant to handle so he reluctantly gave in and passed out.

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA (currently on the USS BASTET with his fiancée)
M11-P035: USS BASTET: Iverson: 34065.1920 ("Time For Answers")
"Time For Answers"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Elegant Equation" / (BAS) "One Word")

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34065.1920

The lights were flickering all over the bridge as the crew returned to their feet, each trying to figure out what had just happened.

Captain Iverson finally pulled herself onto her chair, her head still ringing from whatever had hit the shields. "Was it an attack from the surface?"

"Unknown," Commander Valentine replied, the First Officer having pulled herself up at the tactical station. "What we do know is that the energy bolt that hit us came from the planet, in fact, it originated from the royal palace, but it does not match any type of weapon signature we have ever come across before. The power level of that blast was off the charts, but I believe it was too spread to inflict any damage," Sarena paused as she read the reports that were coming in. "As I suspected, we suffered no damage and no casualties, just a few bumps, and bruises from the force of the impact."

=/\= Astrometrics to the Bridge, Lieutenant Mitshiba here, =/\= the Chief Science Officer said, her voice coming across along with some mild static showing that although the BASTET had not taken any actual damage from the blast, many systems onboard the vessel had been affected. =/\= I ran an analysis on the energy blast that hit us. The shields were able to deflect the greater majority of the energy, a closer look as to the energy distribution following the impact shows that roughly 10% of the energy that made contact with us was returned to the point of origin as phase-shifted feedback. =/\=

"Phases-shifted?" Sarena and Selene said simultaneously, neither one of them willing to guess as to the meaning of that statement.

=/\= The BASTET was using a low power temporal and dimensional field to hide our presence in orbit. That energy blast hit this field and merged with it. For a split second, the ship would have been visible both visually and to sensors, but that is not the real issue. What we should be more concerned about is that the feedback that went back to the planet had with it temporal and dimensional energy. Right now, there is no way to say if this had any effect, or if so what those effects would be. I am continuing my research, but the protective force field around the palace is not making things any easier. Luckily, whatever happened did weaken the energy shell allowing for some of our sensor sweeps to actually make it through. =/\=

"Continue with you work Lieutenant, and report back with any new findings," Commander Valentine said before looking at the Captain. "If the BASTET was visible, even if only for a second or so, it might be safer for us to leave orbit. We can always come back later once we are sure that our systems are fully operational."

"Let us try to figure out what happened to the away team first," Captain Iverson counter proposed. "The power of the energy blast that hit us might have been more than enough to shield the ship while our own camouflage systems were down. Also, I would guess that the curiosity of people will be directed to the palace instead of the space located above it. As strange as it may seem, this may be the safest place to be right now as I doubt anyone else is going to be rushing in to stand in the middle of whatever happened here. That said, I also want to make sure that our team is alright. After that blast, there is no telling what condition they might be in."

"Very well," the First Officer said knowing better than to argue with the Captain, not that she would have in this instance as she agreed with the logic used to justify the decision to stay.

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 34065.1950

It had been over half an hour since the ship had been struck by the energy blast, and during that time some disturbing facts had come to light prompting the Captain to call for a senior staff meeting in order to discuss the situation.

"All right," the Captain said looking at the gathered officers. "What do we have?"

"The gaps in the protective force field have allowed us to get a slightly better idea of what happened," Lieutenant Mitshiba reported. "We can now confirm that the energy blast originated from a location very close to where we were told the 'vault' is."

"What about the away team?" Commander Valentine asked, the woman having grown quite fond of the ILO in whatever personality she presented herself in.

"There are no signs of them," Doctor Andersson said, her head held low. "Every sensor reading we managed to get from within the palace shows the same results. They are nowhere to be seen."

"We should not jump to conclusions," Counsellor Dima quickly added. "Our sensor sweeps were able to locate a fair number of casualties scattered throughout the palace, and none of them remotely resembled the members of the away team."

"I doubt that Gemma would allow a simple energy blast to take her out," Sarena said.

The statement made Miss Satori smile as she thought the same about Elan. The gentle Oltharian had proven himself to be resourceful time and time again, so she easily believed that he and the others had found a way to avoid perishing in this event.

"It is not that simple," Misaki said as she called up a holographic image displaying the path, shape, and effects of the energy blast. The phase-shifted feedback made its way straight back to the point of origin, meaning that it pierced through everything as a single straight line before spreading outward. Now, because of the weak intensity of our own dimensional and temporal field, that feedback was limited in power and range, but it might have been enough to do this. Please keep in mind that this is only a simulation as there is no way o know for sure the exact location of the away team at the time of the energy blast.  We know that the away team was heading to the 'vault'. We also now know that the energy blast originated from a room directly next to the 'vault'. It is therefore very possible that the away team was there when it happened, in fact, they might even have been the cause of the blast, intentionally or not. Either way, if they were near the point of origin when the phase-shifted feedback hit, the temporal and dimensional energy that was part of the soup that went back could have caused a momentary rip in the fabric of spacetime."

"What does that mean?" Nicole asked. After everything the Counsellor experienced while onboard the BASTET, it was much safer to ask for clarification rather than try to come up with an explanation.

"It means that the away team might have been pushed into another dimension, another time, or both," Commander Valentine explained.  The announcement made everyone fear the worse, although one person remained perfectly calm, so much so that she even to smile even if only very lightly.

"We need to narrow down our search parameters," Captain Iverson said as she stood from her chair. "Use whatever means necessary to find them. There is no way we can travel through all of the possible times scattered through endless dimensions search for them. We need somewhere or sometime specific to start.  I want updates every hour on your progress. Dismissed."

As the gathered personnel made their way out of the Observation Lounge, Nicole thought she heard Amber say something under her breath. The Counsellor was not sure, but it certainly sounded as if the woman had said: "So, that is how he did it."

Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer


Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M11-P036: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34065.2100 ("Another Time")
"Another Time"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Elegant Equation" / (BAS) "Time For Answers"]

Setting: Unknown Location
Stardate: 34065.2100

The pain they all experienced due to the collapsing energy field was horrifying. It made them feel like their fur was on fire while their bones were being crushed into dust. Each breath grew increasingly more difficult to take, and their hearts felt as if it would beat out of their chests. That was why there was a sense of great relief when they suddenly felt overtaken by extreme fatigue. From that moment on, the pain stopped as well as any understanding of what was happening to them. The last thing she remembered was the feeling of her body falling limp onto the cold stone floor.

As Sheetora began to wake, she felt confused by the lack of a hard surface beneath her. In fact, the much softer bedding she was on made her feel increasingly uncomfortable. This was not what she should be experiencing which could only mean one thing. They were no longer in the corridor leading to the vault. Springing to a sitting position, Sheetora quickly studied her surroundings, ready for a fight. She could not understand why she was still alive. Certainly, those who set the trap had done so to make sure no member of the royal family would reach the vault. So, why keep her alive? One thing was for sure, she would not give anyone the opportunity to correct this omission.

A young-looking Kzinti woman took note of the sudden awakening. With a motion of her hand, she asked for someone to join her before she spoke. "It is alright. You are safe. We found you unconscious in the palace's lower foundations."

"We mean you no harm," the Kzinti man who joined the woman added. Judging by his attire, the man was some sort of Doctor. "The work team found all of you unconscious. We feared that something bad had happened. I am glad to see that you are awake though. We were not certain that any of you would recuperate. Your vital signs were all over the place when you were brought in."

"Brought in," Sheetora repeated. "Where are we?"

"You are at the construction field medical facility," the nurse replied. The glance toward the Doctor that followed hinted to the concerns she had. The issues with their new patients might not be limited to their physical injuries. If some sort of amnesia was also present, it might make things more difficult for everyone.

"Construction field?" The Kzinti woman was confused more so than before. "What is being built?"

"The Royal Palace," the Doctor said matter-of-factly. Every single Kzinti currently on the planet knew this.

Not ready to believe what she had just been told, Sheetora leaped off the field medical bed and rushed to the nearest entryway. She stopped before setting foot outside, her eyes had already found what she was searching for. The surrounding wilderness was different, but the main aspects were the same. The main difference, of course, was the absence of the Royal Palace. In its stead stood a set of walls under construction.  The woman struggled to understand what was happening. How could she be here?

**You cannot believe them. They are lying to you, trying to confuse you.** A voice with a heavy Russian accent said.

**They are not lying. She just traveled through time.** A calmer voice, this one Uxali in origin said.

**The BASTET travels through time, not her.** The Varro pilot snapped.

**There are no other explanations.** Another voice said, this one clearly sounding Germanic.

**There are always other explanations. In the end though, they do not matter. You need to accept this and have faith that you are here for a greater reason.** The last voice sounded as if spoken by a priestess. The woman's voice was familiar, very familiar. It commanded peace and tranquility. The more she thought of who the voice belonged to, the more a particular image came into her mind. Her skin was blue and her head as smooth as an egg.

The moment she saw Emma Fairchild in her mind, Sheetora thought back to another Oltharian. In doing so, she also recalled the others who had been by her side. She needed to know if they were here with her. This regardless of where or when here was.  As she turned around and scrutinized the small field hospital, she noticed two other figures. They were resting in beds near that where she had been. When another scan of the room revealed no one else, the Kzinti woman rushed back in, aiming straight for the Doctor. "Where is Elan? Where is the Oltharian?"

"The what?" The Doctor asked, shocked by the sudden display of aggression.

"She is probably referring to the giant who was found with them in another room." The nurse hoped that her quick reply would save them having to deal with the woman's anger. As weak as she might have been a few minutes ago, there were no doubts that she had found her strength.

"That blue-skinned thing?" The Doctor gasped as his patient took hold of his throat. "He was taken to another, more secure location. Being an alien, we assumed that he was the cause of you all being unconscious when you were found. The fact that he showed no signs of injuries while you all suffered from multiple raised our concerns. At his size, we thought it best not to take any chances. We asked those in charge of the palace's construction to restrain him. They used their strongest chains to make sure he could not fight back before they took him away."
This news sapped the strength from her and brought Sheetora to near tears. Her hand slowly slipped from the Doctor's throat to fall to her side, a wave of guilt and sadness overpowering her. It was very likely that they owed their lives to him. Therefore, he should not have been subjected to the treatment that had just been described.  "He is not your enemy," she said keeping her eyes down in disbelief of everything that was happening.

"He is clearly not Kzinti, and as such he is not our friend," the Doctor said. He then took the woman's hand into his own, lifting her chin so that she would look at him. "You are tired and confused. You need to rest. Everything will make more sense after."

Sheetora felt a need pushed into her shoulder. By the time she pushed the nurse away, it was already too late. The liquid contained in the syringe had already been injected into her body. It only took a few seconds for the sedative to take effect, depriving her of the ability to stand. After being helped to a nearby bed, she felt too weak to speak. Soon after she lacked the strength to keep her eyes open.

**There is nothing you can do at the moment,** the Oltharian Priestess said. **Rest and gather your thoughts. They are not your enemies. They are your people before they became such. If you are to save everyone, you will need to earn their trust. Right now, though, rest and sleep. There will come a time for action, but this is not it.**

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P037: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 34065.2200 ("Where To Start")
"Where To Start"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Elegant Equation" & (BAS) "Another Time"

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4, Astrometrics Lab
Stardate: 34065.2200

Aki had been at this for over an hour and she was no closer to finding a clue as to where to look for the members of the away team as when she started. The theory she proposed during the meeting was sound, but there was no way for the Asian CSciO to know where they would have been transported to if that was what had actually happened.

The physical universe they lived in was itself endless and adding the possibility that the away team might be anywhere in time within this universe was mind-blowing. Now, adding to this the possibility that they might have been transported to another equally endless dimension possessing its own infinite span of time made the situation be more than enough to make most throw their hands up and give up even before starting. Aki was not about to give up, but the task before her did feel quite overwhelming, to say the least.

The CSciO caught herself a few times reaching for the communication panel onto to stop herself. Drawing on the expertise of the Uxali scientist Wimdalli might have helped, but the woman in question was not available at this time. It was still hard for Aki to grasp the idea that Queen Sheetora, at least the person she saw claiming to be her, had been none other than their own ILO, Lt. Gemma who was now part of their missing officers.

"How are you doing?" The question took the Asian woman by complete surprise, startling her nearly out of her seat. Aki was so enthralled in her research that she had not heard someone entering the Astrometrics Lab.

"Counselor," Aki panted. "You scared the color right out of me."

"Sorry," Nicole said as she walked closer. "It was not my intention, I just wanted to see your progress."

The Asian woman grinned. "Let me guess, you were not able to get anything useful out of Miss Satori."

"The woman is a whole different level of mysterious and she has more than one trick up her sleeves to avoid answering questions," Counselor Dima sadly reported.

"Sounds like someone else we know," Aki said referring to their friend and ILO, Gemma.

"In some small ways, maybe, but at least with Gemma you have a general idea of where she is coming from, no matter what personality is the one you are talking to. With Amber, I might as well be talking to the air as I am not even getting an echo of my own voice. That was one of the reasons I needed to take a break, so I figured that I could drop in and see if you had managed to figure out where they are." There was a hint of hope in the Trill's voice, but unfortunately, the Asian CSciO had nothing to offer to answer that expectation.

"There is just too much ground to cover, even if only in theory," Mitshiba explained thinking it would help to call up a hologram to help make her point. "Space is endless, and although it is unlikely that what happened would have sent the away team somewhere else, it is still a mathematical probability that I cannot simply dismiss. Now, I have to add in the more likely scenario that the interaction between the energy blast from KZINTI ALPHA and our temporal/dimensional field used to camouflage the BASTET threw them somewhere else in time. Just figuring out where in time would be a sizable task, but I have to consider the possibility of them physically being somewhere else as well."

"I have the utmost confidence in your abilities as a scientist to figure it out." Nicole was clearly playing her chosen role as Counselor in this unexpected session, seeing that Aki was overwhelmed by the task at hand.

"Thank you, Counselor, I appreciate what you are trying to do, but my problems do not end there. The BASTET was hidden behind a temporal/dimensional field, this means that either drive could have supplied the required energy to make the members of the away team vanish as they did. The temporal drive could have opened a rip through the fabric of time sending them 1 million years back or a million years forward while the D-Drive could have sent them to one of the countless other dimensions that we might not even know of. The worst part, which I have just thought of now while speaking with you is that there are no guarantees that the members of the away team were sent to the same temporal/dimensional coordinates. I could be looking at not finding one location in this endless and limitless mess, but rather four separate targets. How am I supposed to do that?"

"One step at a time?" Nicole said, trying to downplay the whole thing and by doing so avoid their CSciO from having a complete emotional breakdown. "Right now you are thinking or everything all at the same time, trying to find a single solution to get directly to the answer you need. Maybe a more general approach would be better at this point in your research. My first host Benni was married four times, one of them was to a brilliant stellar cartographer who tirelessly worked on creating the most accurate star charts possible. She often felt frustrated by the scale of her work, but she always managed to find a way to bring herself back down and focus on a single sector of space. She understood that this would slow down her progress, but she also accepted that it was better to take a few small steps in the right direction instead of falling backward because there was too much to consider otherwise."

Aki took a moment to carefully consider the wisdom shared by Dima, and it did not take long for the Asian woman to realize that the Trill was absolutely right. If the CSciO allowed the scale of her task to distract her from the ultimate goal, she would never reach it or even come close to reaching it. "Thank you, that was very helpful."

"Does that mean you are okay to get back to work?" Nicole asked, sounding almost disappointed.

"I think I am, why?"

"Why you ask?" the joint Trill sighed. "I will tell you why. If you are ready to continue with your research, I should leave you to it. If I do that, my professional duties will require me to go back to Amber and try against to convince her to share what she knows."

"One small step at a time," Aki said teasingly, offering the same words of wisdom to the woman who had just spoken them to her.

"That is not fair," Dima grinned. "You are not allowed to use my own words against me. Now, I have no other choice but to storm out of here and leave you to your work hoping that you will experience some sense of guilt in sending me to my own tasks."

"Maybe we can schedule another impromptu visit in an hour or so," the Asian woman suggested. "That way we can take a moment to breathe and share as to just how unsuccessful we were."

"How about we take a more positive approach and plan on sharing our discoveries, however small they might be?"

"Sounds like a plan."

"Good," the Counselor said smiling. "See you in an hour."

Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
M11-P038: USS BASTET: Dima: 34065.2220 ("Revelations")
[Previous Posts: (ANU) “Gut Grinding”/ (BAS) “Where To Start”]

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 2, Mess Hall
Stardate: 34065.2220

Aki’s words of encouragement did a lot to shore up the joined Trill’s resolve to get some useful information from Elan Fairborn’s significant other. Nicole felt that the woman was somehow at the center of this whole thing, and her behavior had done nothing to dissuade her from that. However, something seemed to be holding her back from helping them find the away team. And perhaps instead of obviously and clumsily digging for answers to their immediate concern, she should instead focus her skills as a Counselor on uncovering the reason for Amber’s reticence to cooperate.

“Mind if I join you?” Nicole said gamely, setting down a tray filled with fruit, cheeses, and crackers.

“Back so soon?” The redhead asked the question without malice, holding her cup of tea with both hands.

“I was hungry,” Nic fibbed.

“Hungry for intel is more like it,” Ms. Satori replied neutrally, examining the brightly hued fruit selections. They didn’t look familiar.

“They’re from ELYSIA, a planet in another dimension the crew was stranded on. Lieutenant Mitshiba programmed them into the replicator so we could still have them after we were rescued. Go ahead, there’s plenty.”

Curiosity tempted Elan’s companion and she took a wedge of a deep reddish orange flesh and tasted it. It looked almost like a mango, but its flavor was not as easy to describe. It was sweet and hydrating. “Tastes like paradise.”

Nicole smiled. “It was a magical place that I’ll always remember fondly. But I wouldn’t say we were in our element while we were there.”


“We had lost our main reason for being- our jobs, our duty. Even a place as ethereal as ELYSIA couldn’t replace the need to feel fulfilled on a professional level.”

Amber could see the Oltharian’s face clearly in her mind. He was an example of the same drive to work and solve Starfleet’s problems. His activities on KZINTI ALPHA only proved that she had been right about encouraging him to help A’Janni and the Grand Duke.   

Nicole popped a raspberry in her mouth. “Penny for your thoughts,” she mused aloud, as she saw the other woman disconnect and blissfully stare into the distance.

Amber grabbed some flatbread and spread a soft goat cheese on it. “I’m thinking of someone. I don’t suppose you need to guess who.” If she was afraid for the gentle giant, it certainly wasn’t coming across in her mood or her body language.

“If I understand the report from the ANUBIS, you sacrificed a lot to protect those you care about.”

Amber nodded. “And I wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.”

Nic looked puzzled. “Then, don’t we both want the same thing? The safe return of Elan and the others?”

“Naturally, but the end does not always justify the means. I trust that his competence will bring them back to us. I don’t think we should interfere.”

“Are you saying we could inadvertently prevent the outcome we are looking for?”

“You understand how a singular event can cause a ripple in space-time. If passing my knowledge to the crew could possibly do that, isn’t it worth being cautious?”

“How can you be so sure?” The Counselor paused, her frustration rising within her again. “You’ve been to where they are, haven’t you?”

Amber shook her head. “I hate to disappoint you, but no.”

“I heard you after the briefing. You know that Elan was the catalyst for something on that planet. And I suspect you knew it before you both came aboard the BASTET. What other explanation could there be?”

“It’s not a bad hypothesis, for a Counselor. But you’re still wrong.”

“Why don’t you enlighten me?”

“I’m not scolding you- you’re not the first to make that assumption. You all seem to think I’m ‘the girl who has seen everything’. I suppose the concept of immortality lends itself well to the idea of endless galactic travel to all the most interesting places and most pivotal times in history. Putting right what once went wrong, hoping the next trip will bring us home. But there is one thing you have wrong. I’m not like your Gemma.”

“What do you mean?

“I am not the only, nor am I the last.” Amber looked solemnly into Nicole’s eyes. “There are others of my kind out there. We did not generally travel together, but we did share our stories.”

Nicole had the grace to look surprised. More questions immediately cropped up in her mind, but they were related to Amber’s people, and not necessary for the current matter at hand. “There has to be something you can tell me,” the Trill pleaded.

Amber Satori was silent for an uncomfortable amount of time. At first, Nicole thought the woman had once again turned on the silent treatment. However, the placid demeanor she had when they had started talking had gone away, replaced by a tension in her delicate features. She wasn’t ignoring the request; she was thinking. Thinking of a way to help, without divulging too much.

Finally, Amber sighed. “The away team is still on KZINTI ALPHA. However, they have traveled back in time. What I didn’t know is when this would happen, or how.”

Nic felt a wave of relief. This would help Aki immensely in her research.

“I knew when I met A’Janni that Elan and I had to follow him in his quest to restore the OGRAAM. I remembered him from an account one of my brethren had provided to me. An Oltharian once appeared on the planet while the Royal Palace was under construction, accompanied by a Caitian and two Kzinti. The description of the Caitian is an exact match for A’Janni. It was more than a coincidence.”

The petite brunette had to agree with Amber on that point. “I see.”.

“There is one other thing,” Amber continued. “Parts of the Palace contain carvings that are Oltharian text, which the Kzinti are unable to read or decipher. They could have only been placed there by another Oltharian.”

“You believe it to be Elan’s handiwork?”

“I am uncertain. But I cannot see any other way an Oltharian could have made it there, in that era, if not by this phase shift. But maybe that’s a question for the Lieutenant,” she finished, nudging the Cns to report her findings.

“Thank you,” Nicole said as she stood up. The words were offered as acknowledgment of the burden of what had been shared. They weren’t adequate, but they were heartfelt.

“There’s no need,” the redhead replied, still unsure if she had followed the correct instincts. “Just please, help them.” 

Susan Ledbetter
Writing for

M11-P039: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34066.0545 ("Outsiders")
[previous (ANU) "Gut Grinding" / (BAS) "Revelations"]]

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Construction Site Medical Facility
Stardate: 34066.0545 

His skull felts several sizes too small and the bed the Caitian was resting upon felt like it was spinning as if caught inside a violent twister. Every time he tried to open his eyes, the brightness that assaulted him forced A'Janni to quickly close his eyes once again, which was not that much of an issue as it helped him fight off the waves upon waves of dizziness that were sweeping through him. It took some time, but after a while he managed to get a glimpse of Grand Duke Krayss and Queen Sheetora, confirming that they were here with him, wherever *here* was.

He could not be certain that Elan was missing. Although he had not seen the blue-skinned giant following several more attempts to do so, A'Janni reasoned that due to the quickness of his surveys there was a possibility that he had simply missed him. Since this was some sort of medical facility, this conclusion having been reached based on the appearance of the room and its occupants, it was also a possibility that the Oltharian had been taken elsewhere for whatever reason they deemed necessary.

Feeling as he felt, the only thing the Caitian could do was to rest and listen. As long they believed he was unconscious, whoever they were, he would be able to listen in on their conversations and learn more about where they were and what happened to bring them here.

"How are the patients?" A male asked.

"She is fine and unharmed," a female replied. A'Janni could only guess that this was an exchange between a Doctor and his Nurse. "There does not appear to be any signs of injuries whatsoever unlike the other two, which in itself is odd given how close to one another they were."

"How about the other two?"

"He is responding to the treatments and should make a complete recovery from his burns in time," the nurse said. "Him, on the other hand, is a completely different story. The treatments are not working as they should be. It is as if he was not Kzinti despite his appearance."  Obviously, they were referring to him. Kzinti and Caitians shared a common ancestry, making them distant cousins of sorts. That was one of the reasons why Admiral Koniki had chosen him to watch over the royal family as his presence and appearance would not raise too many questions. The problem was that the similarities between the two races were, as the saying went, only skin deep.  This would explain why he felt the way he did, the treatments he was being given causing havoc with his body and mind.

This left him with a huge problem though. What would their reaction be if they learned he was not Kzinti but rather Caitian? If they did not make this rather simple discovery, how would these treatments affect him in the long run?

"He is not Kzinti, my guess is that he's Caitian."

A'Janni was startled by the familiar sound of the voice. The face of the Oltharian's fiancée immediately sprung to mind making the Caitian wonder why she had beamed down to the planet. This could explain why Elan had not been around, but it failed to account as to why Sheetora, Krayss and himself had remained on KZINTI ALPHA.

"Are you certain?" The Doctor asked.

"As certain as anyone could be I guess," the woman with the familiar voice said. "There are some very minor visible differences that seem to be present, but putting those aside, it is the only way to explain why the treatments are affecting him the way they are."

"What should we do?" The nurse asked.

"First, stop the treatments as it could lead to some severe internal issues. After that, let his body flush out the mediation you already gave him and see what can be done after."

He felt someone sitting on the edge of the bed next to him causing him to open his eyes. Squinting through the brightness he managed to see the outline of a Kzinti woman whom he immediately assumed was the nurse who had come to stop the treatments.

"Relax," the woman spoke in the familiar voice he recognized as being that of Amber Satori. "You need to rest. I am not sure what any of you are doing here, but I know this," she continued whispering, "You do not belong here."

Puzzled and confused, A'Janni forced open his eyes and did his best to focus on the woman sitting by his side. Her appearance matched the voice, in that they were both familiar but there was no escaping the fact that her face and hands displayed clear and unmistakable feline features. If this was Amber Satori, she had undergone a great deal of surgical alterations to be able to pass as a native member of this world's inhabitants, but why?  As he looked up at her, the Caitian managed to ask, "Who are you?"

"Someone of no importance," she softly replied as she pushed a needle into his arm. "This will help you sleep. We can talk later. Now rest, I will see what I can do to help the others."

His eyelids quickly became too heavy for him to keep open. Whoever she was, he could do nothing else but trust her, something that strangely enough he found himself able to do with little effort. There was something about the woman that made him feel safe and he trusted her to help them. Now, if only he knew why they needed this help in the first place, his resting would be a lot easier.

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P040: USS BASTET: Fairborn: 34066.0630 ("Timely Realization")
"Timely Realization"
Previous posts (ANU) "Inconceivable Imaginings" / (BAS) "Outsiders"

"That's the thing about time travel you're always moving forward, even when you go back."
-  James A. Owen

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Outside the Construction Site Medical Facility
Stardate: 34066.0630

A lone Kzinti woman sat on a nearby rock, her gaze fixated on the imposing figure chained and locked inside a makeshift metal cage. Her chin rested in the palm of her hand as she silently observed and studied the mysterious being. When Elan began to move, waking from whatever uneasy sleep he had managed to find, he quickly realized that he was bound and trapped. Not long after, as he looked around for an explanation to his predicament, the gentle giant discovered that he was being intently observed.

"Who are you and what are you doing here?"

The woman's voice was beyond familiar to the gentle giant, so much so that he stared at her wondering how his eyes had been tricked to show him someone else than the person he knew the voice belonged to. The more Elan studied the Kzinti woman, the more similarities he found in her appearance and posture to the woman he had expected to find there. If it was indeed her, why had she not rush to his help instead of just sitting there, staring back at him as if she had never seen an Oltharian before today?

"Who are you and what are you doing here?" She repeated her gentle smile a near-perfect copy of the one he had come to adore seeing on his fiancée.  Without a better understanding of what was happening, Elan decided to remain silent. Maybe it was Amber sitting there, maybe it was someone who appeared very much like her, aside from the fact that she was Kzinti. Maybe this was nothing more than a dream, a nightmare that he hoped to quickly wake from. "All right, let me make it a little easier for you," she continued shifting her chin from the palm of one hand to the other. "You do not belong here, and neither do your friends in there," she said nodding towards the large tent housing the medical facility. "One is a Kzinti, that I am sure of, the other I believe to be Caitian and the last one, the woman, well, she is something else. She may appear to be Kzinti but there is something about her that just doesn't fit. Whatever she is, it serves to confirm my suspicions that none of you should be here, so again I will ask. Who are you and what are you doing here?"

There was no doubt about it, this was not Amber. Elan could not understand what was happening but seeing the royal palace under construction in the distance gave him the one piece of the puzzle he needed to dictate how he needed to proceed.  "My apologies," the giant offered with a bow of his head as that was the only movement he could make. "We are just travelers, lost and trying to get back to our home."

The Kzinti woman chuckled. Obviously she was not buying the simplistic answer and judging by her posture, Elan could only guess as to the extent of what she knew about him and the others. "All right, I will play it your way. Tell me kind sir, where would home be? I have never before today seen the likes of your race, and judging by your composure and lack of struggle against the chains restraining your movements, you do not belong to one of the more war-like races in this quadrant although your size and strength would make you a formidable warrior. I also detect a strong sense of religious conviction in you, not the type that forces you to push your beliefs on others but rather the type that dictates your every move and words. I know this because you were actually praying while you were sleeping, or at least I believe that is what you were doing as I did not recognize the language. Rest assured that I am not here to interrogate you or even to treat you as the evil outsider the others see you be. I am just curious, nothing more. I guess you could say it is a trait of *my* race."

The emphasis used by the woman hinted that her appearance did not fully reflect the person she was, maybe enough to put them on equal footing as far as being aliens on this world and its people. Under normal circumstances, Elan would have maintained his silence knowing all too well the risks involved in altering the timeline even in the slightest possible ways, but there was something about the way the Kzinti woman behaved that made him feel comfortable and able to trust her. He felt at ease in her presence, allowing him to trust her almost as much as he trusted Amber.  "Elan," he said dropping all of his defenses. "My name is Elan Fairborn, I am from OLTHAR PRIME."

"Oltharian! Of course," the woman joyfully exclaimed. "Let me guess, you are a member of the Religious Circle."

Obviously she knew about his race despite never having seen an Oltharian. Her display of knowledge should have concerned Elan but instead, it made him feel even more willing to open up to her. "Actually not, I did try to join the Religious Circle against my parents' wishes, but I was unable to pass the final exams despite my uncle's help. That eventually forced me to pursue studies in the Scientific Circle, once there I chose the field of engineering."

"Well engineer Elan Fairborn of OLTHAR PRME, it is very nice to meet you," the Kzinti woman said standing from the rock she was sitting on in order to approach the cage. " My name is Merevaik and I will admit that I never expected to ever encounter and Oltharian, not after what Amber said about your race not having any desire to venture into space. So, this is a unique opportunity for me to learn more and experience some of what she has been talking for centuries. I only wish that it were under better circumstances."

A thousand and one questions rushed into Elan's mind. What was Merevaik's relationship with Amber? The two women appeared so different, one being Human and while the other was Kzinti and yet they shared more than just a few uncanny similarities that went beyond physical attributes. Their voices and even their mannerism were so similar that the Oltharian could not help but wonder if the two of them were not sisters in some way that he could not understand or even imagine at this time.

"Can you help us?" The Oltharian asked, his white eyes staring into hers making it beyond clear as to the importance of his request. This was not just helping four people return to where they came from, it would be helping to keep things as they should and needed to be.

Merevaik pondered the question asked of her. Four simple words weaved together to form a simple question that could not lead to a simple answer. The real issue though was could she afford not helping Elan and the others while knowing what she did?

"I have no say in what happens here," the Kzinti woman stated. "I am an observer, someone who stays out of everyone's way to let things happen as they were meant to."

"I do not understand what it is you truly are or what Amber was before she sacrificed her immortality to save the life of another," Elan said in a far more assertive manner than he had ever used before. "What I do know is that neither one of you are mere observers. Amber helped shape my world's history as I suspect you are doing here. You influence decisions without anyone even realizing that you are, helping them onto a path that will protect and benefit them in the years to come. Maybe you believe your own words, maybe you actually think that your presence here will not be somehow recorded in the tomes of time, but reality has proven and will continue to prove that you and those like you have guided events and people for the better. My presence here, as well as that of my companions, in this time and place, will only serve to hinder those plans and maybe even cause irreparable damage to the timeline."

As serious as the Oltharian's plea was, Merevaik smiled as she looked back at him. "I can see why Amber is so captivated by your race. You possess a passion and drive that is quite unique. All right, I will see what I can, in the meantime, I suggest you stay put and not talk to anyone else."

Elan silently agreed knowing that the only part he needed to take care of was to remain silent as his 'staying put' would not be an issue at this time thanks to the chains binding him and the cage he was being kept in.

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA (currently on the USS BASTET with his fiancée)
M11-P041: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34066.0830 ("Temporal Logic")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Temporal Logic"
[previous post (ANU) "Inconceivable Imaginings" / (BAS) "Timely Realization")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34066.0830

The Executive Officer had just completed her survey of the science station and was now heading back to the center of the bridge where Captain Iverson sat.  "Temporal jump is complete. If the information provided by Miss Satory is accurate, we should be at the right time to find our people."

"Commander," Lt. Mitshiba chimed in. "I would like to again remind you and the Captain that the Kzinti Royal Palace took over a decade to be fully constructed. Counselor Dima said that Miss Satori mentioned that her fiancée was there when the palace was, and I quote, 'under construction', this has considerably narrowed the search parameters but it is far from providing us with a specific timeframe for us to use."

"True," the Iverson said before glancing in Valentine's direction.

"We went from endless time through endless dimensions to a period spanning 10 years over a single location," Sarena pointed out. "I think we did good."

"Good indeed," Selene agreed. "Now that we are here, let us make sure that we are not detected. The last thing we need is to risk further contaminating the timeline."

"The field being generated by the D-Drive should be more than enough to block our presence from sensors as well as any wandering eyes," Misaki reported. "We have all the time in the universe to search for them."

"That saying takes on an entirely new significance when spoken by someone from this crew," Nicole grinned. The Counselor had come to the bridge to witness the temporal jump, something that many on board the BASTET never grew tired of experiencing. "I am sorry that Miss Satori could not be more specific," the joint Trill added, speaking to the Executive Officer and Captain.

"You made the feelings of Miss Satori very clear in regards to her telling us what she did," Sarena said. "We all fully understand the significance of tempering with the timeline, that is why we are here. Hopefully we can find Elan and the others before something happens that would change the already established history of this world."

"Commander," Mitshiba said, turning her chair to allow her to face the two command-level officers. "Would it be such a bad thing if we changed what we know to be the more recent history? I am just thinking about the Kzinti royal family. Would it be such a bad thing if we found a way to warn them about the attck so that they would not all be slaughtered like animals?"

"Aki!" Strangely enough, the scowlding did not come from the Captain nor the Executive Officer but rather from the Ship's Counselor. "You are the Chief Science Officer of the BASTET, this means that out of all of us here on this ship, you are the one who knows exactly why that would be a terrible mistakle."

"A'Janni would not have to rescue the Grand Duke," the Captain said.

"He would not have borded a runabout and ran away, calling for a Priority Black causing us to alter our course," the Commander quickly followed with.

"It would also mean that Elan and Amber would still be on OLTHAR PRIME," Nicole joined in. "Meaning that her knowledge of his travelling through time would not have been brought forward, risking the integrity of the timeline."

"Pre-destination paradox, I get it," Mitshiba sighed as she turned her chair back to face the science station she was working at. "Based on that though, would it not be equally dangerous for the integrity of the timeline if we found Elan and the others before they did what they are here to do? If we are going to claim that this was meant to happen, then our being here could change the course of events yet to come."

"That is why, right now, we need to focus on finding Elan, A'Janni, Gemma and the Grand Duke," Sarena stated. "Once we have accomplished this, we can look and see what is happening and try to figure out when it will be the right time for us to intervene."

"If we are to use temporal logic," Nicole continued. "We have to accept the possibility that we are exactly where we need to be and ww will do exactly what is required when it is required as ecverything has already happened."

"According to some studies in quantum mechanics, there is no such thing as a 'preset course of action'. Our traveling back to this point effectively resets the timeline, so we have to guess as to what happened the first time around and make sure that we proceed exactly as we did the first time," Mitshiba explained. "The problem is that we have no idea what it is we did that first time as we are unable to look into the past without us actually being there, thus effectively changing the course of events."

"Even more of a reason for us to be as careful as we can," Commander Valentine said. "We know that elan was here, somewhere within the next 10 years or so. Our best course of action is to focus on finding him and the others. Once that is accomplished, we can debate as to the impact of whatever next move we decide on taking."

"No I remember why time travel gives me a headache," Nicole sighed. "You people can have fun figuring things out up here, I'm going to Sickbay and see if Sofia has something to treat temporal pains."

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P042: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34066.1300 ("Another Story")
"Another Story"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Inconceivable Imaginings" / (BAS) "Temporal Logic"]

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Near the Construction site
Stardate: 34066.1300

Sheetora, or Gemma for those who knew her, stood on the edge of the construction site. It was strange for Kzinti Queen to see the palace like this. Beams spread between stone pillars were a mere skeleton of what she remembered this place to be. The intricate stone floors were nothing more than pressed gravel at this point. The towers and walls which gave the structure its unique look was yet to be seen. The view was surreal but somehow, she found a way to enjoy it. This was when the history of the people of KZINTI ALPHA began. This was where it had all started.

Merevaik walked up to the bemused woman, smiling. "Enjoy the views?"

"What is there not to enjoy?" Sheetora replied. "This is where it all started, and also where it will all end." The Queen could not hold back her tears, but she also knew that this was not the time for such a display. Forcing herself to regain her composure, she turned to look at Merevaik. "How are the others?"

The Kzinti woman tilted her head to one side. "You care very much for them, don't you?"

Sheetora turned to face the woman. This was not her time, but she still did her best to present herself as a Queen should. "They are more than friends. They are brave men who did not hesitate to risk their lives to make things better. My caring for them and their well-being is the least that I can do."

"The one you call Krayss is strong, a Kzinti worthy of that name. I might even go as far as to say that he displays a strength usually attributed to the royal family. In any case, he will be fine.  It might take a couple of days, but he will be fine." Merevaik paused before turning her gaze back onto the palace under construction. "Your friend A'Janni is going to take a little longer though. The medication they were giving him almost killed him. I think the Doctor accepted my explanation that he suffers from a rare genetic illness. The one thing that plays in his favor is his appearance. The medical staff is accepting him as one of their own, a Kzinti."

"Thank you," Sheetora said. "We are all in your debt and i hope that we will be able to somehow repay your kindness."

Merevaik's gaze remained on the construction site. "It might be a little early for you to thank me. Your friend Elan, as since and interesting as he may be, is not going to be freed anytime soon. Unlike A'Janni, his appearance is not making things easy for him. I am sure you know just how untrusting of other races the Kzinti are. My guess is that is why you look the way you do."

"I am Kzinti," Sheetora claimed, her outrage only visible for a few seconds. The Queen quickly enough regained her calm tough. She could have listed her full ancestry, proving her lineage. The problem was that doing so might risk damaging the timeline. While trying to come up with a way to further justify her claim, the two women were joined by another.

"Merevaik, is this the friend you were talking to me about?"

Sheetora's eyes opened wide as she saw the woman, stunned into complete silence. Did Merevaik know her well enough to just have a casual conversation? If so, why had there not been any historical accounts of this?

"Your Highness," the Kzinti woman acknowledged, bowing with respect as the robbed woman approached. The other Kzinti quickly followed suit, Merevaik displaying the proper manner to greet a Queen. "Yes, this is Sheetora."

"Sheetora," the Queen said smiling. "What a beautiful name. "I can only hope that one day I will have a granddaughter with such a charming name."

"Everything is possible your Highness," Merevaik said, keeping her head low and gaze to the ground.

"Please, stop that," the Queen pleaded to her friend. "Sheetora is going to think that I am some sort of stuck-up Queen."

"I was just having a little bit of fun," Merevaik grinned. Turning to face their guest, the Kzinti woman continued. "Queen Reelana is a hands-on kind of person. Something tells me that you already knew that though."

"I did hear some stories," Sheetora said dismissively. The truth was that she knew everything about the Queen. As the mate of the first King of KZINTI ALPHA, the woman became as famous as could be.

"Please, do not believe everything you hear," Reelana said. "You wanted to see me?" The Queen asked of Merevaik.

"It is about the blue-skinned alien currently being held in chains."

"Yes, I did hear about him," the Queen noted. "Apparently he is a monstrous beast believed to have come down from the mountains. Come to think of it, I also heard that he came from far beneath the waves of the ocean. Whoever he is, the stories about what he is have already traveled far and wide."

"I am sure that the strange color of his skin and eyes have something to do with that," Merevaik chuckled.

"He is a kind and harmless soul," Sheetora chirped in. "He is also my friend."

"A friend you say." The Queen appeared very interested in this revelation. "Now I will have no other choice but to meet this friend of yours."

"Your Highness," Merevaik said taking hold of the Queen's hand. "The stories about this *beast* have made him something to be feared. Many have already associated his presence here as a bad omen. Should you be seen next to him, the stories could escalate further."

The Queen nodded with reluctant understanding. "This is a difficult time for our people. There are enough problems and rumors floating around without adding more. I guess I will have to pass on this chance to meet your friend." Reelana smiled as she looked at Sheetora for a few seconds before returning her gaze onto Merevaik. "Do what you believe necessary. I trust your judgment. Now, if you will excuse me, I have a construction conflict to resolve. There seem to be some problems with the power generators we brought with us."

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P043: USS BASTET: Mitshiba: 34066.1630 ("Without A Trace")
"Without A Trace"
Previous posts: (ANU) "Leaping Ladies" & (BAS) "Another Story"

Setting: USS BASTET, Deck 4, Astrometrics Lab
Stardate: 34066.1630

Thanks to the information provided by Amber, the BASTET had successfully travelled back in time to the earliest known point where the royal palace on KZINTI ALPHA was being built. From there, it would be easy for the ship to travel through time allowing the Asian CSciO to scan records and accounts for something out of the ordinary. In this particular case Aki would be searching for stories or accounts of the presence of four strangers, one of which should stick out like a bald blue giant in a sea of grey, beige and white furs.  Aki believed that this would be a cinch, requiring an hour or maybe two at most. That was nearly eight hours ago and still the Asian scientist had not found any signs of the Oltharian or any of the other members of the team he was a part of.

"Still no luck?" Commander Valentine inquired, the woman staying in the now opened doorway to the Astrometrics lab as if worried that her presence in the room might negatively affect the results of the search.

"I don't get it," Aki exclaimed. "You would think that there would be some mention of a large blue man appearing out of nowhere. I can understand that the Grand Duke would be able to pass relatively unnoticed, even despite his size. After all he is Kzinti and could very quickly realize what happened and adapt accordingly. The same could be said for Gemma as her entire training is based on having her be unnoticed. I could even accept that A'Janni would be able to insert himself with relative ease into an older Kzinti society, but Elan! The man sticks out, figuratively as well as literally, making him impossible to miss. So, explain to me how there are no historical accounts what-so-ever about anything that resembles him?"

"I was hoping that you would tell me that," the Commander said. "That is why I am here. There is also the fact that Doctor Andersson has come to check in on you a few times, each time being dismissed or flat out ignored. You have not taken a single moment's rest since you started this project."

"I can't give up now," Aki said refreshing all of her monitors as the search was restarted from the very beginning. "Someone, somewhere had to see something and written about it. I just have to find those records, they will allow us to pinpoint when exactly the away team is."

"Were you not to one who claimed we had 'all the time in the universe to search for them' back on the bridge?" The Commander was having way too much fun at Aki's expense.

"That was before I found out that there is *nothing* for us to us to narrow down our search. Yes we know the planet, heck we even have it pinned down to a single location inside a building, within a timespan of just over a decade. The problem is that we cannot use standard sensors while operating the temporal and dimensional drives, especially not when they are used to camouflage the ship from the outside universe. We would have to drop these protections and initiate normal sensor scans of the structure to see if we are before or after the Oltharian markings appeared."

"What do the historical records say about those markings?" Commander Valentine asked, just to make sure she had the fullest possible picture and understanding of the problem they faced.

"The markings are a mystery," Aki said in a low, rumbling voice, likely trying to mimic a Kzinti using the speech pattern of the Grand Duke. "They are beyond the understanding of our scientists leaving the more religiously minded people amongst our group to believe them to have special or even possibly mystical significances." The Asian woman paused and cleared her throat in order to bring her voice back to how it normally sounded. "There is no indication as to when this was written or what time period it was in reference to. It might has well have been written a million years in the future for all the help it gives us."

"Do you believe that this is a coincidence?" Valentine asked.

"What is a coincidence?" Mitshiba said lashing out, unable to hold back her frustration any longer. "That the Kzinti believed those markings to have special meanings or that there is no way to use that account or any other like it to help pin down a temporal location as to when they were first noticed on the walls of the palace's lower levels?"

"That and the fact that there are no records of Elan or anyone else suddenly appearing on KZINTI ALPHA in this general time period?" The Commander clarified.

Vigorously shaking her head, Aki said. "No, this is not a coincidence. Something happened to hide them from history, and in so doing hiding them from us. I am just not certain if this was to keep us from finding them or from keeping their presence an undocumented event." The Asian scientist paused and called up one an image showing an odd creature that seemed to have spawned from a child's nightmare. "The Kzinti on that planet are not adverse to writing about wild and unusual things and occurrences. Take this thing for example, it was described as a monstrous beast that came down from the mountains to hunt little cubs and devour all those that it found wandering at night."

"I recall a few similar stories back on EARTH," the Commander chuckled. "Guess they are a staple of universal folklore."

"And that's my point," Mitshiba continued. "Most races used stories like this to explain what they could not understand at that time, using such wild tales to frighten the younger elements of their groups or society in order to better control them. So why have the Kzinti completely ignored a tall, bald blue-skinned giant from their writings and histories?"

"Maybe they haven't," the Commander suggested. "We just have not found how the perceived Elan and the others and translated that into their folklore and history. For all we know, Elan could have been seen as an angel, minus the halo and wings."

"True," Aki agreed. "He could have just as easily been looked upon as a demon, minus the horns and pointed tail. There are just too many variables at play, I need something more."

"I will speak with Miss Satori and see if there is anything more she can give us that might help, in the meantime keep digging. Maybe what we are looking for is right there in front of us and we are just not seeing it," the Commander stopped and finally entered the Astrometrics lab. "But first, I need you to take some time to rest. You falling asleep or worst, falling ill, because you have pushed yourself too much is not going to help anyone.  I am sure that the 'monstrous beast that came down from the mountains' will still be here waiting for you when you return."

As much as she did not want to leave, Aki had to agree, although reluctantly, that she was experiencing a fair amount of fatigue maybe causing her to not see what, as the commander had just said, was right there in front of her.

Dawn Bohr

Lieutenant Misaki 'Aki' Mitshiba [Access Character BIO for Misaki Mitshiba]
Chief Science Officer
M11-P044: USS BASTET: Fairborn: 34067.0700 ("Time to Talk")
"Time to Talk"
Previous posts (ANU) "Leaping Ladies" / (BAS) "Without A Trace"

"The problem with predestination paradoxes is that it has all been said before... and will be said again. Discuss."
- Professor Aika Amser, Starfleet Academy, Advance studies in Temporal Mechanics  

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Outside the Construction Site Medical Facility
Stardate: 34067.0700

The Oltharian was enjoying being able to stretch his legs and body to their fullest after being released from the cage the giant had been stuffed in for longer than he would have cared for. He understood the reasoning why, but still, would it have hurt anyone to grant him just a little more legroom?

"You are welcome," Merevaik said, the Kzinti woman offering a gentle smile as she tossed the lock and key into the nearby bushes to the side. "I thought you would have been happier to be out of there," she added seeing a heavy concern weighing on the towering man's brows.

"Please, forgive me," Elan quickly said adding a deep and respect-filled full-body bow. "I am most grateful for what you have done for me. I am simply concerned about the BASTET and those onboard."

A smile flashed over the Kzinti woman's lips. "By those onboard, I gather you mean her. Merevaik chuckled. "The worst part is that she doesn't even know you exist, at least not yet. Let us forget the future for a moment and focus on the past, meaning her future and your past based on what happened to you before today. Amber means a great deal to you, doesn't she?" Merevaik teased. "You do not need to answer that question. Changing the subject, let me guess why you are so concerned... you are worried because your friends have not yet found you?"

"How did you know that?" The Oltharian asked, stunned and shocked. As far as he knew, none of the team had mentioned anything about the BASTET being able to travel through time. Then again, Elan had been trapped in that cage for a few days, so his knowledge of who might have said what had become rather limited.

Merevaik grinned as she placed her hands on her hips. "Do you have so little faith in the ability of others to use logic to figure it all out?" She scowled him. "I thought you were a better person than that Elan Fairborn from OLTHAR PRIME. I actually thought that you might belong to a better and more enlightened race." The Kzinti woman allowed for the terror to take a good hold on the giant's features before continuing. "Relax Elan; I am just playing with you. What can I say? Cats are playful creatures by nature. As for how I figured it out, it was relatively easy. Since you have been in that cage, you have been trying to figure out how temporal energy could have sent all of you back to this time and you only used one possible source for that energy. Since it would not make sense for that 'temporal drive' you mumbled about to just be floating in space all by its lonesome self, it had to be on a ship. Also, the fact that you more than once seemed surprised that no one has come to rescue any of you or even asked about you meant that you expect someone to have traveled back in time after you four. Again, unless you have people just floating out there in space, they had to be on a ship along with that temporal drive. Let me put your mind at ease, the reason they have not come for you is that they have not found you." The woman shrugged before continuing. "I might have picked up a few tricks over the last few centuries, namely on how to cover my tracks. That said, do not worry, they will find you... when the time is right... no pun intended."

As much as Merevaik resembled and even sounded like Amber, there was a distinct difference in their character that Elan recognized. The more he listened to the Kzinti, the more the Olthartian accepted the woman as being a kind of younger sister to the woman he loved. "How are the others?" The gentle giant asked, stretching his arms one last time.

"Krayss will be released from the field hospital today. Sheetora is fine and has gone off on her own to investigate the construction site," Merevaik replied.

"You let her go on her own?" Elan quickly turned to give the site a thorough scan hoping to find the woman before she did something that could make their stay here a permanent one.

"First of all, relax," the Kzinti woman said coming to stand next to the giant, taking hold of his arm with both of hers. "We both know that Sheetora, or whoever she is, is the kind of person that likes to figure things out on her own, and is good at it. Maybe I understand her more than I realized at first, which might also explain why I didn't try to stop her as it would have been a complete waste of time. There is nothing she can do right now that would put any of you in danger, so again relax, your timeline is safe."

Elan was not ready to just accept Merevaik's efforts at reassuring him, but the Oltharian had little say in the matter. The away team was trapped in the past and it seemed that she controlled everything that could play a role in their eventual going back to their time.  "What about A'Janni?"

"He will live," she replied looking up at the mountain by her side. "The moment Krayss woke up and saw him lying there by his side, the brute decided to play protector. Scared the entire medical staff in the process though, but I think things are back in order. Might be why they are happy to see them both leave as soon as possible," Merevaik added with a chuckle. "You are safe, you are all safe. All we have to do now is to figure out why you four are here."

"We were thrown back in time by a freak accident," the Oltharian stated.

"You do not believe that, and I certainly don't," the Kzinti retaliated with. "You mentioned earlier that you found inscriptions in your language on the walls and doors of the lower level of the palace. Since I know for a fact that those are not there now, nor that there are any plans to put them there at any point during the construction, you are going to put them there, and if not you someone who knows how important those markings will be to the completion of this temporal loop. I just have an issue with accepting that this loop consists of nothing more than you coming back in time to carve your name on a door to that you will travel back in time to carve your name into that door. There has to be another reason for you four to be here if not, it would make this predestination paradox a truly boring one."

"For someone who claimed to be nothing more than, and I quote, 'an observer, someone who stays out of everyone's way to let things happen as they were meant to,' you sure sound like you are rather involved in this matter."

"My sweet Elan," Merevaik said in the exact same manner that Amber said to words to him immediately taking the giant off guard. "We are all but pawns in this game the universe plays, a game that stretches far beyond the limits of what we perceive as space and time. We all have a role to play, and I for one refuse to believe that my role in this is just to see you go back to your time. To me, it just doesn't make sense. Now, I believe it is best if you remained here while I go and get your friends at the medical facility. After I bring them back here, we can all go searching for Sheetora and figure out what it is you are truly here for."

Francois Charette

Commanding Officer


Lt. Commander Elan Fairborn [Access Character BIO for Elan Fairborn]
Robotics Engineering Officer
NEW ALEXANDRIA (currently on the USS BASTET with his fiancée)
M11-P045: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34067.0800 ("Past Future")
"Past Future"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Leaping Ladies" / (BAS) "Time to Talk"]

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Near the Construction site
Stardate: 34067.0800

"Where is Sheetora?" Krayss wasted no time in setting the pecking order. The Kzinti was a Grand Duke of the royal court. As such he was used to being in charge, making requests and barking orders. Although he was the only true Kzinti out of the four visitors, she liked him the least. Glaring at the pompous feline, Merevaik pointed to the construction site with a single finger. "Are you out of your mind letting her go alone like that? What if she ran into one of the workers and said something?"

Elan stepped in. "Merevaik informed me that there has been problems with the power generator in that section. The site has been vacated for the moment until the issue is resolved to avoid potential problems."

"Makes perfect sense." Krayss was not in a good mood. "The construction site is dangerous enough to warrant an evacuation, but Sheetora is free to wander in as she wishes. Are you trying to get her killed?"

"Listen," it was Merevaik's turn to lay down the law. "If I wanted you killed, you would not be here. The only reason you are free to 'wander as you wish' is because of Queen Reelana."

"Queen Reelana?!?" Those two words proved to be enough to knock Krayss a few notches down. He knew that they had traveled back in time. He knew that this was at the dawn of the KZINTI ALPHA civilization. He just needed a little extra push to truly understand what it all meant for him and his kind.

"Yes, the Queen!" Merevaik was not in the mood to explain beyond that. "She gave me full authority to deal with you as I saw fit. That is why your medical records have been destroyed. It is why you are free and also why you are going to stop being such a spoiled kitten. Your friend Sheetora seems to be the only one that understands what needs to be done. She's out there trying to figure it all out while you are here having a hissing fit. Now, if you are done, we can go in after her."

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Royal Palace (Under construction)
Stardate: 34067.0815

Memories of things yet to happen filled her mind. The beautiful flower gardens were nothing but a pile of dirt. The majestic walls and towers were mere stacks of stones. The lower levels of the palace appeared as nothing more than a roofless maze. Except for one room, which was built before anything else. She could remember the stories about it, about how the vault somehow became the heart and soul of the palace. She could not understand this, until now. Seeing the sealed room standing alone in the maze that was the lowest level made everything clear. This was where it had all happened, where it would happen again.

Making her way down to the vault, Sheetora glanced at the inactive power generator. Like the palace, it was a mere shadow of what it would become. Returning her gaze onto the room at the end of the corridor, the Kzinti smiled. All of the stories she read about this place did not do it justice. The feeling of being where history had been made was almost more than she could handle. The Kzinti closed her eyes and gathered her thoughts. She was here to accomplish a mission, not to be a visitor through time.

Slowly she approached the massive door standing before her. Somehow it appeared bigger than she remembered it to be. Then again, the last time she was here, her fur and skin were being torched by the energy field. That thought made her glance at the power generator once again. She found the lack of lights or any indication that it was operational very reassuring. Turning back to look at the vault, she extended her hand and touched the smooth metal surface. The coldness of the surface against her fingers confirmed that this was not a dream. This was as real as could be. The door stood before her as solid and locked as was expected. That was when one small yet all too important realization came into her mind. She did not have the key.

Mentally scrambling through her memories, she tried to recall the last time she saw the OGRAAM. The away team had it in its possession when they came down. She also recalled seeing it in Krayss' hands as they reached this level. Sheetora turned her head and stared at a specific spot on the floor, right next to the wall. That was where she had seen the item last. Krayss had likely dropped it when the trap was triggered. It was likely also the spot where it remained after they were transported through time to this place.

Sheetora collapsed onto her knees weeping. The OGRAAM was lost and with it their hopes of restoring the royal family. All of this had been for nothing. Now, even if they did manage to return to their time, the artifact would be in the hands of their enemies. As amazing as it all was, she had been there at both the start and end of the reign.

She did not know how long she had been there crying. All she knew was that a set of strong hands had taken hold of her shoulders. As Sheetorah looked up with teary eyes, she saw Krayss looking back at her. Elan and A'Janni stood behind him along with Merevaik. "They're all dead, and there is nothing we can do about it." After saying this, she buried her face into the man's muscular chest.

"It was not your fault. There is nothing we could have done." The Grand Duke was trying to ease her pain, but how could he? His pain was just as great if not more. The woman in his arms was a painful reminder of the sister he lost, of the Queen they all lost.

A'Janni and Elan stood there like giant statues. The sadness they felt could not compare to that of the others, yet they shared in it. They understood the scope of the lost and felt the sting of their inability to do anything about it.

"If you are all finished making a puddle on the floor, maybe we can get something done." It was easy to see that Merevaik felt no sadness or even concerns. "There is a lot to do and, shall I say it, not that much time."

"What is there to do?" Krayss snarled. "Without the OGRAAM all is lost. Even if we had the one from this timeline, it is empty of the knowledge we need. Bringing it back with us would be pointless."

"For a Kzinti, you give up way too easily." The woman said, grinning as she looked back at the Oltharian. "Come on 'big blue', show me that Amber was right in wanting to spend so much time with your race." The Oltharian appeared puzzled, but behind the confusion, Merevaik could see the gears rolling. "That's right, you are almost there."

"The BASTET has not found us because you hid us from the history of this place." Elan was doing his best to put all of the pieces of the puzzle together. "That same history was shaped to conceal more than just us, wasn't it?"

"Amber would be proud," the Kzinti woman said. "Actually, I guess it would be more accurate to say that she *will* be proud. The knowledge of the attack on the palace is going to become part of this place. Nothing can be done to change what happened. That does not mean that nothing can be done to ensure the continuation of the bloodline. Here, in time place and time, is where the legends start. This is where the truth becomes hidden from time to make everything better."

The Caitian glared at the Kzinti woman. "That would mean altering the timeline," A'Janni gasped. "You are talking about setting things into motion that will change what has happened."

"Not if this is a predestination paradox," the Oltharian said. "This could all have been part of the original timeline. Everything that we have done so far was to bring us here. From this point, we are to set things to make sure the royal family survives the massacre. We undo what happened before we left, but we can set things up to make what comes after easier."

"See, I knew I'd figure out why she likes your kind so much. You have the power to shape the future. We all do, we always have, the only difference here is that you are doing so from further back in time than usual." Merevaik approached Krayss and Sheetora. "You are not here by accident. Nothing in this universe happens by accident. Resigning yourself to accepting what you see is only an excuse born from fear. You are here now with a power that few others will ever be able to yield. How the future unfolds though depends on how you choose to use that power."

"I don't get it." It was evident to see that temporal mechanics was not one of A'Janni's strong points.

"Everything we do here and now cannot impact the flow of history as it has been recorded. Everything has to happen as it had, but we can use that knowledge to our advantage." Elan was working things out quickly, something that Merevaik was pleased to see. "We know that the OGRAAM is destroyed, but what if there was another?"

"A copy?" Krayss questioned.

"More like a back-up," Elan corrected. "The OGRAAM was designed to keep the genetic record of the royal bloodline safe. What if that was not the only thing it was designed for. better yet, what if *we* were the ones who designed it?"

"He's right," Merevaik said seeing the expressions of complete confusion on the faces of the others. "Until today, no one had ever heard of this OGRAAM. The vault was meant to be nothing more than a place to keep the royal archives."

"What are we supposed to do?" A'Janni asked. "How can we do what you said? We have no tools, no equipment to use."

"Don't we?" Merevaik teased.

"The power generator has all of the parts we might need," Sheetora said, drying her eyes.

Merevaik smiled. "That's the spirit. The workers will not be back until tomorrow. We have that much time to get everything in place."

"Get what in place?" Krayss allowed his anger and frustration to show.

"The future of our race," Sheetora replied. "That's what."

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P046: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34067.0900 ("Houdini Switch")
"Houdini Switch"
[previous (ANU) "Leaping Ladies" / (BAS) "Past Future"]


Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Construction Site
Stardate: 34067.0900 

They would have a day to accomplish it all. A little less than 24 hours to make the impossible real. The plan, as explained by Merevaik, sounded crazy if not just plain insane. This was going to be some sort of 'Houdini Switch' that would wait centuries before being put into action, and there would be no way for anyone to know if it actually worked until after it would be too late to do anything about it.

The term 'Houdini Switch' was a phrased coined by Lt. Njorui, an Engineer on NEW ALEXANDRIA who enjoyed creating tools and trinkets to help operatives during some of the more difficult and demanding missions. Some came to know him as 'M', referring to a similar fictional character from the world of James Bond created in the mid-20th century. As much as the name suited him, simply because of what he did in his spare time, he personally preferred the moniker of Houdini, a famous magician of the late 19th to early 20th century.

As far as Njorui was concerned, what he did was more in line with making the impossible real instead of just creating gadgets, and based on what the team was trying to do here in the past of KZINTI ALPHA. Magic seemed to better describe what it was they were trying to accomplish.

Elan was busy working on the power generator while Krayss and Sheetora were working out the details on how they would create a duplicate OGRAAM. This gave A'Janni time to speak with Merevaik and hopefully get her to describe exactly what it was that they were trying to do here.

"You look better," the Kzinti woman said, greeting the approaching Caitian with a smile.

"I am told that i owe you my life," A'Janni said in return glancing over to Sheetora.

"You owe me nothing," she dismissed without any hesitation. "I just played the role the universe saw fit to give me in this little story."

"Little story? Maybe I misunderstood what it is we are trying to do here, but it sounds like we are trying to do a great deal more than take part in a 'little story'." A'Janni was visibly shocked. "it sounds like we are trying to come up with a way to undo the horror that saw the murder of the royal family."

"Undoing anything would be bad, very bad," Merevaik said, the Kzinti woman sounding rather calm given what it was they were talking about. "We cannot change what has been, even if we consider that those events have not yet happened, at least for me, but they have happened for you and them, so we cannot change or even risk to change anything. That does not mean though that we can't put certain things in place to make sure that what happens after is not what those responsible for the attack want or even hoped to see come to pass."

There were dozens upon dozens of questions A'Janni wanted to ask, and even mnore answers he needed to be given to just start to make sense of any of this. Knowing that they did not have the time for this, he opted for a single, simpler question. "How do you plan of making this happen? Anything that we do here is going to be discovered at some point over the next couple hundreds of years and that will change history in ways that we cannot even begin to imagine. The first rule of Temporal Mechanics is not to interfere or affect any changes. We are technically not even supposed to interact with people as the simple knowledge of our presence could prove sufficient to alter the timeline."

"That is why I made sure that there are no records of any of you ever having been here," Merevaik said as if the task had been as simple as could be. "Everything that we are going to do is going to be equally hidden from the historical records. Every stone will be as it was, or more to the point, as they were meant to be. No one will know that anything happened, not until the time is right. When that happens, the royal family will see its legacy continue on."

"That is semantics," A'Janni argued. "You are asking us to change history. When the BASTET came to rescue me and Grand Duke Krayss, the royal family was already dead. There is nothing anyone can do that will change that, not unless the timeline is altered in some way."

"Like the Kzinti, you Caitian have a hard time with the nuances and complexities of time. We are not going to change anything, history will still show that the attack against the royal family took place and that everyone in the palace was killed. All we are doing here is making sure that what happens after that is not what those responsible wanted." Seeing that A'Janni was not at all convinced Merevaik moved closer and showed him a small glass sphere. "Do you know what this is?"

"It's an optical lens, usually used for to create small holographic images," A'Janni said. "What, are you planning on creating holograms of the royal family?"

"Yes," the Kzinti sighed as she rolled her eyes. "I am planning on creating holograms of people i will not see for another couple hundred years." Taking one of the Caitian's paws into her own she continued, "You need to stop and relax. All I want you to do right now is look at the small sphere." A'Janni nodded and did as asked, following the small glass ball as it was waved in front of him before being placed in the palm of his paw before his other paw was placed over it.

"Now what?" He asked.

"Do you feel the small sphere between your paws?" She asked. "Do you feel it pressing against your skin? Do you feel its smooth surface and how fragile it is?"

"Yes," the Caitian confirmed as he tried to move his hands slightly apart in order not to risk breaking the small sphere.

"No, no, no," Merevaik said noticing his hands ever so gently moving away from one another. "I need you to hold it tight. In fact, I need you to hold it very tight." As she said this she forcefully pressed his paws together causing the small sphere to shatter in his paws.

"Why did you make me do that?" He demanded as he opened his paws to look upon the broken glass sphere, but instead of seeing pieces of glass in his palms he instead saw small shards of wood. "What happened?"

"Nothing much," the Kzinti said producing the small glass ball between her fingers. "I just did a simple switch. Now, as far as history is concerned, you saw the sphere, you even felt it being placed between your hands and even experienced the horror of its destruction. Like you, history can be fooled into believing something that did not actually happen. I am not saying that we can save the entire royal family with what we will do here, but I am pretty certain that we can save enough to make sure the royal bloodline does not end in the time from when you came."

The demonstration proved to be more than enough to convince A'janni that what they were doing might actually accomplish the intended goal.  "How do you plan to make sure that none of what we do here will be detected?"

"Carefully," she said with a wink, "very carefully."

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P047: USS BASTET: Valentine: 34067.1100 ("Searching For the Unseen")
[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
"Searching For the Unseen"
[previous post (ANU) "Quenched Queries" / (BAS) "Houdini Switch")]

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34067.1100

From an endless universe of possibilities through time and space, the BASTET and its crew were where and when they needed to be, well at least where, the when needed to be more specifically pinned down, but at least they were close.

"I have no idea as to what else I could be looking for," Lt. Mitshiba said. "We have searched all available records for any signs of Elan, Gemma, A'Janni and Grand Duke Krayss but have found absolutely nothing. Whoever helped them to clean their historical tracks did a better job than I could have.

"We cannot give up," the Executive Officer said, Sarena sharing in Misaki's frustration in their inability to locate the missing away team.

"You will find them," Amber said calmly, the woman emerging from the Captain's Ready Room quickly followed by Captain Iverson. "It is just a matter of time."

"You are kidding me, right?" Commander Valentine grimaced. "We are on board a ship able to travel through time, if we did not find any signs of them *now*, spending more time on this search will not make any difference."

"Actually," Misaki began, the Scientist ready to offer an idea that she had been working on for a while now. "Although we are able to travel through time, there are still a great deal about the flow and sequence of events that we are only guessing at. We understand the concept of cause and effect, and have learned to accept that effect can precede cause. If time is truly relative, meaning that we exist in a timeline flowing at the same rate any all others, what we are experiencing is the *effect* of the causes that have been thus far taken. Our ability to travel forward through time does not alter the speed of our own flow of time or the relative passage of time that the away team is experiencing. Granted this is only a theory, but it does make perfect sense given all that we have seen and experienced so far."

"That is what Miss Satori just finished explaining to me," the captain said. "Not as clearly or detailed but the general idea remains the same. We have not yet found anything because there is nothing for us to find, yet."

"Actually," Misaki grinned. "There is a theoretical way we could, but it would require us to travel through time while traveling through time, allowing us to see what we will see later in this current flow of time which is happening in parallel with the flow of time the away team is experiencing."

"Have I mentioned how much I despise Temporal Mechanics?" Sarena said feeling a wave of nausea washing through her.

"Several times," Selene replied. "I am also ready to bet that you will be saying it again many more times, and that without being able to travel through *this* timeline."

"Thanks," the Executive Officer gently growled, her word dripping with sarcasm. "So, if there is nothing for us to find *now*, what do we do?"

"The only thing we can do," Miss Satori replied. "We wait."

"You have to admit as to just how ironic it is for us to be on board a temporal vessel and forced to wait for something to happen, something that technically speaking should have already taken place several hundred years ago."

"No one ever said that time travel was easy," Captain Iverson said as she took her seat at the center of the command deck.

"Commander Valentine," Amber began. "I am not sure if this will help you in any way, but know that I do not know what will happen. I have no knowledge of any other timeline than my own, as extensive as it was. I just know... I just believe that Elan is not destined to be trapped in the past. All I know for certain is that I was told he would one day travel back to the early days of the civilization of KZINTI ALPHA. I was not told more, likely because they knew the risk of my knowing more."

"Predestination paradox?" Sarena asked of the Captain.

"Predestination paradox," Selene confirmed, those two simple words offering the only possible and logical explanation for what they were all having to deal with. Even their presence in here, in the past, was part of a complex set of events that they needed to see to their completion if the timeline was to remain intact.

"Alright then," the Executive Officer conceded as she turned her attention back to Lt. Mitshiba. "Continue monitoring the historical records and have the computer search for any changes between what we have already observed and any new data collected. Whatever hint will be added may be exceptionally small and we have to be ready to spot it. I just hope that the away team is going to do what they need quickly enough or whatever they did might prove useless to restoring the royal family on KZINTI ALPHA."

A quiet hush spread through the bridge as everyone considered what had been said and the fact that they could do nothing else but wait. The Captain and Executive Officer keeping their concerns for Lt. Gemma to themselves while Miss Satori did the same but for Elan.

[/\] [/\] [/\] [/\] [/\]
Karen Price

Executive Officer
M11-P048: USS BASTET: Andersson: 34067.1300 ("Not The Time to be Miserable")
"Not The Time to be Miserable"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Quantifying Queries" by Marissa / (BAS) " Searching For the Unseen" by Karen]

Setting: USS BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34067.1300

The BASTET was in the past and those on the bridge were searching for the missing officers as best they could. Even Miss Satori had found a way to help in this quest, but Sofia and Nic were alas not so lucky. There was little a Chief Medical Officer or a Ship's Counselor could do when dealing with a temporal search for four people whom, for all intents and purposes, had managed to keep their presence a complete secret from the rest of the universe.

"There is no need for you to be this nervous," the joint Trill said to the physician.

"Why do you believe I am nervous?" Sofia inquired, putting the medical tricorder that she was holding down on the tray next to the main examination table.

"I'm the Ship's Counselor," Nic teased smiling. "I can tell when a member of the crew is nervous."

"So your observation is purely professional?" Andersson fired back as she looked at the grinning woman before returning her attention to the tray of medical instruments in order to fetch the tricorder for it.

"No, as a friend I can also see that you are highly fidgety and are desperately trying to find something to keep your thoughts from driving you crazy," Dima added as she leaned back against one of the medical beds.

"Maybe you are misinterpreting what it is you are seeing," the physician said opening the tricorder and verifying its settings before returning it to the tray. "Maybe this timeline is affecting you eyesight."

"My eyesight is just fine," the Trill said followed by a long heavy sigh. "You are nervous about Gemma, Elan, A'Janni and the Grand Duke. There is nothing wrong with that."

"There is no reason for you to believe that I am nervous about anything," Sofia argued using the tricorder she had picked up once again as some sort of pointer to reinforce her words.

"Fine," Nic chuckled as she leaned further back against the medical bed. "You are not nervous in the least, and my eyesight is probably as defective as that tricoder you have been checking for a dozen times or so in the last 3 minutes."

Looking at the small device in her hand, Sofia realized what she had been doing. As much as the physician might have wanted to argue against the Counselor about her mental state, it was clear that Nicole had all of the proofs she needed. Returning the tricorder to the tray once more, Sofia turned to face her friend and purposely took several steps forward to make sure she would no longer be able to reach for anything on that tray. "Alright, you win."

"Was there ever any doubts about that?" Dima teased. "If it makes you feel better, you are not the only one who is concerned about the away team. Everyone on the bridge is walking on pins and needles as they wait for something to appear, something that will give them an idea as to when exactly they are so that we can lock in on their temporal location and bring them back on board the BASTET.  Even Miss Satori is worried because she has no idea of what will actually happen. As much a veteran as Captain Iverson and Commander Valentine are in matters of time travel, neither one of them has ever had to face something like this. I realize that this news may not make you feel better, but at the very least it should stop making you feel like you are the only one feeling that way. We are all worried, concerned and nervous because there is no way for any of us to know what will happen next."

"You are right," Andersson said. "That should not make me feel any better, but in some ways it does. I guess it is true; misery loves company."

"Are you miserable?"

"No, that is just the saying."

"Good," Nic said as she pushed off the medical bed and approached Sofia. "If you are miserable it would mean that I have been doing something wrong. My making sure that you are happy is part of my responsibilities."

"Is that professional or personal responsibility?" The Doctor said clearly teasing the joint Trill.

Instead of offering a verbal reply, Nicole reached for Sofia, wrapping her arms around her neck and drawing the woman in closer so that they could share a kiss. When the embrace ended, the blonde-haired woman tasted the sweetness on her lips and smiled. "If this is the way you *professionally* deal with everyone else's issues, I am going to become very jealous very quickly."

"You have nothing to be jealous about," Nicole grinned. "You are the only one I use this particular *professionally* therapy with."

"I am very glad to hear that, but there is one problem though."

"Which is?'

"I think I might end up needing a lot of more that particular therapy in the near future."

Dima laughed. "You have to be careful when saying something like that. We are on board a temporal ship after all, so saying 'near future' might not be as 'near' as either one of us might like it to be."

"Touché," Sofia chuckled.  "Now, how about we head up to the bridge and check in on what is happening, or more to the point what has not yet happened, or should i say what has happened but has not yet been seen by us. To be honest I have lost track of when any of this is happening."

"Let's go to the bridge," Nicole agreed. "That way i will be able to keep an eye on you and make sure that your poor tricorder gets some time to recuperate from the abuse you subjected it to."

"Funny," Andersson said in a playful yet mocking manner. "Very funny."

Tiffany Reeve

Chief Medical Officer

Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer
M11-P049: USS BASTET: Iverson: 34067.1400 ("Full Circle, part 1")
"Full Circle, part 1"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Quenched Queries" / (BAS) "Not The Time to be Miserable")

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34067.1400

Selene sat in the Captain's chair, thinking back to the conversation Miss Satori and her shared about an hour ago. Although the woman had not said a great deal, Selene was able to 'read between the lines' and figure out more than what the strange woman was trying to say, or not to say.  It was now common knowledge that Amber belonged to an ancient race with an exceptionally long lifespan making them near immortals as far as most humanoid races were concerned. By the voluntary admissions of the same woman, it was also know that individuals within that species enjoyed observing the evolution of specific civilizations, often helping guide them onto a more prosperous path that would still protect their individual ways of life.

Amber Satori possessed such an interest for the people of OLTHAR PRIME and is was a safe bet that another member of her race had taken on a similar interest for the people who came to call KZINTI ALPHA their home. That was the only way Iverson to explain how Miss Satori knew what she did about Elan and his travels through time, and it helped the Commanding Officer of the BASTET understand a little more why they had not found any signs of the away team in any of the historical records of that civilization.

Selene shared the growing impatience of her crew, wanting to do more than simply waiting for something to happen, but she also knew that time could not be rushed. Things would happen as they were meant to, that they liked it or note.

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Construction Site
Stardate: 34067.1430

"How is the creation of the backup for the OGRAAM?" Merevaik asked as she watched with interest the skilled giant at work. Watching the Oltharian work the way he did made her understand what Amber would eventually see in him.

"The copy is nearly complete but there is a problem," Elan said looking up at the massive power generator that stood before him.

"Are there parts that you do not have access to?"

"No," the imposing man quickly shook his head and amended his answer. "I mean yes, but that is not the problem. It is the power generator that is the issue."

"How so?" Merevaik asked. "The team of Kzinti engineers had reported a problem with the generator but she failed to understand how that problem would become important enough for Elan to take note of it.

"The generator is weaker than it should be," the Oltharian summarized knowing that a full technical explanation would not be any more useful than the shorter version of his observations.

"I am guessing that is the problem the Kzinti engineers reported to the Queen yesterday."

"No," Elan said pointing to one of the many parts that formed the generator. "One of the power regulators was somehow corroded and caused the generator to create a power loop that risked causing an overload that would destroy it and this section of the palace. Based on the tools I have seen here, this problem would not be easily fixed and could result in radiation leaking out. I was able to fix the problem using Federation knowhow but that does not change the fact that the power output of this generator is far below what it was when I forced it into an overload to redirect the field energy and save the others."

"Could it be due to an upgrade that will later be implemented?" Merevaik asked, trying to understand how what was now and what needed to be could be reconciled.

"No," the Oltharian replied with a level of certainty that took Merevaik but surprise. "As technologically advanced as the KZINTI will be in what is my present, they are not able to have a device generate the amount of power required, even if the machine is as large as this one is.  Something else had to be added or modified to allow this generator to channel the kind of energy I will be dealing with in the future."

"That is why you are here," Merevaik said. Her certainty did not match that of the Oltharian but it did stand far beyond her words being nothing more than a mere educated guess. "Everything is coming full circle. You were meant to be here, not only to help with the OGRAAM but to make sure that things were in place to bring your four here, this place and time. You need to modify the power generator so that it can... so that it will produce the needed level of energy when it is needed in your time."

"There are no proofs that this is what happened," Elan objected. "My making any sort of changes to that generator could possibly change the entire timeline."

"You have already admitted to making alterations to the generator," Merevaik said pointing to the part the Oltharian had previously indicated as being defective. "Who is to say that you did no do the rest of the modifications? Your argument is that you making these modifications *might* change the timeline, but you and i but know that you not making those modifications will most *certainly* change the way things happen, and that would lead to everything on this world changing. You came here for a reason, the timeline is already set. You are meant to be here and modify the power generator so that it can send you back here and save the royal family."

The Oltharian wanted to argue against this line of thinking, but the fact was that he had been thinking about it since discovering the discrepancy and considered the ramifications of his actions, or inactions.  "If I am to do this, I will need better tools and more time. Even if I work through the night, I will not be able to make the required modifications in a way that will not be detected by the Kzinti engineers."

"You worry about making those modifications," Merevaik said, the Kzinti woman already walking away. "I will take care of getting you the tools and time you need."

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34067.2100

"Captain," Commander Valentine said while standing at the station Lieutenant Gemma would have normally been manning. "The temporal probe we left in orbit before our departure has picked up reports from KZINTI ALPHA. Civil unrest is spreading rapidly and is threatening to overtake the entire planet. If the away team does not do what it is they need to do quickly, it may be too late to stop what will most certainly become the end of the civilization of KZINTI ALPHA."

"Thank you Commander," Selene acknowledged knowing all too well that there was nothing they could do about any of this. The future of the civilization of KZINTI ALPHA rested entirely in the hands of the away team, wherever they may be in the history of that world.

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Construction Site
Stardate: 34068.0200

The other three were fast asleep, exhausted by the work and preparations they had been doing to ensure the survival of the bloodline of the royal family. Only Elan was still awake, the Oltharian working harder now than he had been before.

"How are you able to do that?" Merevaik asked. "I do not believe that i have seen you sleep or even rest over the last few days."

"I come from a world with a planetary rotation of roughly 36 standard hours," the Oltharian explained. "I am used to working long shifts.

"Bet that is going to be something else Amber will like about you. The problem with the Kzinti, and the Caitians as well, is that they love sleeping. Guess that is a common trait for any feline-like creature in this galaxy."

"Can I ask you a question?" Elan inquired never stopping for an instant his work on the power generator.

"Of course," Merevaik promptly answered. "I am just not sure what I could tell you about the Kzinti of this world that you do not already know. Remember, as far as everyone else here is concerned, you are from the future while I am not. My knowledge extends only in one direction, the past."

"The question is not about the Kzinti but about you and your race."

"Oh." The clarification caused the Kzinti woman to lean back against the nearest wall before sliding down into a sitting position. "Let me guess, Amber never revealed any specifics?"

"She never revealed *anything*," Elan corrected. "Any time the subject of her past came up, she always found a way to change the subject. I will admit that I never gave her a hard time about this, I was just happy that she was there by my side."

"Tell you what, I will answer your questions as much as I can, but you must understand that my people have lived for several millennia on various planets without ever making their presence known."

"I understand," Elan said before actually taking a moment to rest and look at the woman he was speaking with. "Why do what it is that you do? I mean, why influence the evolution of other races? What benefit do you, as individuals or as a collective, get from this?"

"Wow," Merevaik said giggling. "Here I thought you were going to ask me about something simple. All right, let me see if I can answer your questions in a way that you will find acceptable. There are forces out there in the universe that only wish to see the results of war and destruction. They have no other interest other than to evaluate just how cruel and determined a race can be when trying to win a conflict, even if that conflict is one that puts members of the same species against each other. Since the universe tries its best to maintain balance, my people were brought into existence to go against those destructive ideas."

"You are the counter balance to the Lokustaar?" Elan asked, this being the simplest way for him to explain and accept what he was being told.

"The Lokustaar are only one of countless other races who operate on the side of darkness," Merevaik said. "I will admit that they may be amongst the worsts, but they are far from being the only ones who feed on death and destruction. My people just try to even things out a little by helping younger races avoid the pitfalls they may encounter as they follow the path of evolution set before them. We are not here to alter the destiny of any one individual or race; we are just trying to open eyes to better and more prosperous possibilities."

"Thank you," Elan said, accepting the explanation he was given without any further inquiries.

"My turn," Merevaik said. "I answered your question, now it is your turn to answer one of mine."

"Go ahead," the Oltharian said accepting the deal.

"Can you show me some examples of your writing? You claimed that it was seeing words written in your language that made you take notice of this place."

"Actually, it was the carving of my name that drew me to the power generator," Elan explained as he carved the inscription into the dust covering the stone floor next to him.  Merevaik watched with childish curiosity as the Oltharian took the time to write all of the words he had seen carved into the walls and door before he and the others were thrown back in time to now.

"I almost envy Amber," the Kzinti woman said once the Oltharian had completed the small task.

"How so?"

"It is evident that both she and I are attracted to stronger, more powerful races, but it would seem that your race possesses a gentleness that I am sorry to say is lacking in the Kzinti. Even the way your written language is demonstrates a kind of poetic charm that I am sure she would never grow tired of."

Elan smiled. "I am not sure, but once I am back I will make a point to ask her.

"That should be reason enough for you to make sure you return to the time and place you belong to and where I am sure she is waiting for you. Now, I will let you work. The workers are set to come back when the sun is at its highest, which I am afraid to say will be much sooner than I am sure anyone of us would like."

Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer


Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)
M11-P050: USS BASTET: A'Janni: 34068.0215 ("Cat Nap")
"Cat Nap"
[previous (ANU) "Quenched Queries" / (BAS) "Full Circle, Part 1"]


Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Construction Site
Stardate: 34068.0215 

There was so much to do and so little time to do it all. A'Janni understood little about Temporal Mechanics or anything relating to advance sciences in general, and that was part of the reason why he chose to work in the more physical field of security. All he knew for sure was that they needed to have everything in place before they returned to their proper time but even that did not stop him and the others to fall from exhaustion.

Somehow he found himself snuggling with the woman who had taken on the identity of Sheetora but for that brief moment in time the Caitian ignored that distinction and simply found comfort in seeing the Queen next to him, peacefully resting.  He gazed upon her thinking back to all of the times they shared. This was not to say that anything inappropriate had ever happened between them, far from it, the King's mate was as loyal to her mate as she was devoted to her people. A'Janni had just grown to see her as more than just a ruler to be protected, he saw her as a friend, which is why he found it so difficult to accept that the Kzinti snuggling in against him was not her but a member of the BASTET's crew.

Everything about this Sheetora was a perfect copy of the original. The way she moved, the way she talked, the priorities she held dear to her heart, even her scent was exactly as the Special Security Envoy remembered them to be. As he looked down upon her resting form, doing his best not to move and disturb her, A'Janni allowed himself to dream of what their work here in the past could mean for the future. Could all of the work and preparations they had done here lead to the Queen and her children survive the assault that he found himself unable to protect them from?

The Caitian turned his attention onto the Grand Duke who was also sleeping, the Kzinti having succumbed to fatigue while still holding the tools he was using at the time. Krayss had been driven more than anyone else to see this plan succeed as it would not only mean saving the royal bloodline but also the rescue of his sister and her litters from the clutches of death.  Every time he mentioned something to that effect, Merevaik grew more distant, the woman clearly knowing or understand much more than anyone else.

A'Janni returned his attention onto the Kzinti woman by his side, forgetting on purpose her true identity to instead delight in who she represented. There was no way for them to know how things would unfold and to accurately predict the outcome of what they were doing here. The only thing they could do was to do their best to secure the future they hoped to see, a future that would have the royal family of KZINTI ALPHA restored to its rightful place and status.

"How long have I been asleep?" Sheetora suddenly asked. Something had woken her and for that A'Janni felt a twinge of sorrow and guilt as part of him would have enjoyed that moment lasting much longer than it had.

"Somewhere in the range of 35 to 40 minutes," he said. "Not long. I think we all needed a cat nap to regain out strength.

"We have too much to do," she said pushing herself away from the Caitian. "We cannot afford to waste any time."

"We all needed to take a small break," A'Janni said glancing over to Krayss. "We were at a point where we would have started making mistakes and that would have delayed us even more. Sometimes it is best to take a moment to enjoy the 'now' instead of rushing forward only to realize that you need to go back and start all over."

"When did you become the Royal Advisor?" She asked with a faint smile.

"I am what your Highness needs me to be," A'Janni replied. "I am just afraid that my skills as an advisor are going to be even less effective than my skills as a Special Security Envoy."

"Stop!" Sheetora commanded as only a Queen could. "You cannot blame yourself for what happened. A single man could not have stopped what came to pass. I believe that an entire army could not have done any better. Those who wanted me and my family dead took their time and planned their attack with great precision to insure that no one could stop them, and yet you managed to save Krayss.  Now we are here and we can use the knowledge we obtained to ensure that their plan does not succeed, at least not fully. An army could not have stopped these cowards in the present, but I strongly believe that the four of us can stop them here, now, in the past."

"Then we better get back to work," A'Janni said bouncing onto his feet before offering a helping hand to the woman he had to once again remind himself was not the Queen. Whoever this Gemma was underneath this facade, she was a woman that the Caitian was admiring more and more with each passing moment. How could he not as she was giving him the opportunity to undo the errors he believed himself responsible for while at the same time offering the kind of support and understand he could have only hoped to get from the real Sheetora.

Jayson Sousa

Lieutenant JG A'Janni [Access Character BIO for A'Janni]
Special Security Envoy
M11-P051: USS BASTET: Gemma: 34068.0400 ("False Trickery)
"False Trickery"
[the previous post was (ANU) "Quenched Queries" / (BAS) "Cat Nap"]

Setting: KZINTI ALPHA, Palace Construction site
Stardate: 34068.0400

"Elan, have you been able to create the second OGRAAM?" Sheetora was going through the list of everything that needed to be done. The artifact was crucial to their plan, and it was the largest piece of the puzzle that was still missing. When no reply came, the Kzinti woman headed for the room she knew the Oltharian had been in. The last she say him, he was busy upgrading the power generator. When she arrived and failed to locate the giant, Sheetora called out his name "Elan?"

The answer as to his whereabouts came in the form of Merevaik pointing to the opposite side of the room. "He is in the back, working on the power conduits to the generator."

Knowing this, Sheetora began the journey that would take her around the massive machine. A little less than half way around she made a discovery that instantly angered her. "Elan! What happened to the OGRAAM?" The Kzinti woman stood in horror over the open casing that was meant to be the copy of the artifact. Her knowledge of engineering was not a match for the Oltharian. As a Queen such matters were taken care of by others. What little she did know though made her understand that the artifact was far from being ready.

"I am sorry," the giant said as he appeared from behind the power generator. It did not take long for him to realize what caused Sheetora to lose her composure. "I needed to take care of the generator. It needed to be able to generate enough power to send us back to this time."

"What is the use of us being here if we go back without the means to open the vault?" The Queen's anger quickly melted into despair. With the OGRAAM there would be no way for them to restore the bloodline.

"Can you tell me more about this OGRAAM," Merevaik said. "I have figured out the basics from what you all have been saying. I understand its general purpose, but I do not see how it will restore the royal bloodline"

"The OGRAAM was created..." Sheetora stopped herself as she looked around the unfinished foundations of the palace. "The OGRAAM *will* be created to keet track of the royal lineage. Within it will a detailed genetic record of every member of the royal family. This will ensure that no usurper can claim the throne. Only one with Royal blood will be able to rightfully claim power. if the OGRAA is destroyed, then the throne becomes open to anyone, be them worthy or not."

"What i find interesting is that the King, nor anyone else in the royal court, has even mentioned anything like that." Merevaik said, openly stating her confusion. "Since the very beginning I have been question the need for this device. Even after your explanation, I fail to see its justification."

"The OGRAAM is also the only key to the Vault," Sheetora added.

"Again, this makes little sense," the Kzinti woman said pointing to the vault. "The door is sealed by a genetic scan, which acts exactly as you claim the OGRAAM will. Why claim that it is the only key when clearly it is not."

"Something will happen to the panel," Krayss theorized. "That would explain why the OGRAAM was required."

"It would be easier to simply replace the panel," Elan said. "There has to be another reason to justify the creation of that artifact."

A'Janni stepped forth, ready to voice his take on the situation. "There is only one other possible explanation. The OGRAAM is nothing more than a decoy. An object meant to be targeted by those who would challenge the royal family."

Merevaik smiled. "That would make a lot more sense. What if someone suggested to the King that there might be people plotting against his lineage? Maybe not in this generation or the next, but at some point in the future. I am sure he would do everything he could to protect future generations."

"Who would that someone be?" A'Janni asked knowing very well the only possible answer.

"If this is the case," Krayss said. "We have another problem, one that is much bigger than anything else. If the OGRAAM was meant to be nothing more than a decoy, I am the only one left who can open the Vault."

"Maybe not," Merevaik said looking at Sheetora. "There is always here."

"She is not the real Queen," the Grand Duke pointed out, his voice filled with anger and disappointment.

For a moment, Sheetora's head was filled with voices of other people. Although she did not know any of them, all were as familiar as her own.

**Not the real QUEEN?!?**

**She a fake, like all of the others who came before her. This is nothing more than a shell without a soul.**

**Preposterous! Sheetora is as real as anyone else here.**

**What makes a person real or not? Does physical appearance make a person or is it what is contained inside?**

**What truly matters is who she is now.**

**A fake Queen is still just that, an imposter. It does not matter how good she may be or how many people she has managed to fool. The trust remains that she is not the person they need her to be.**

"I am the real Queen," Sheetora announced. "At least as real as I am needed to be to see this mission succeed."

"Her genetic identity could very easily be added to the Vault's identification panel," Merevaik stated. "That way Elan can finish working on the power generator. It will also allow you both, once you have returned to your time, to unlock the Vault."

"If Sheetora opens the Vault, it will instantly discredit those who tried to end the bloodline," A'Janni said. "If you, Grand Duke, are the one to open the Vault, some could see that as you being in league with the assassins."

Krayss was not at all happy with this turn of events. Since the very beginning he had been struggling to accept Gemma as the Queen she took on the identity of. As much as he did not like the idea though, he had to agree that this was the best possible plan available to them.

"Fine," the Grand Duke conceded. "Do what you have to do, I am heading back to the other rooms to make sure all is in place."

"But I am the real Queen," Sheetora said. "Am I not?" The conversation had caused her to question her own identity.

"You are the Queen your Highness," A'Janni reassured but to no avail, Sheetora was not listening. Without any warning she rushed towards the stairs leading out of the construction site.

"Let me talk to her," Merevaik said. "You three continue working, I will get her back."

"We have to hurry," Elan said. "We have less than 8 hours to get everything ready before the workers return.

Rachel Jackie Johnson

Intel Operative

[The fun is getting to wear multiple disguises and getting to explore multiple personalities and bring them to life. - Jenna Fischer]
M11-P052: USS BASTET: Iverson: 34068.1145 ("Full Circle, part 2")
"Full Circle, part 2"
(Previous Post: (ANU) "Quenched Queries" / (BAS) "False Trickery")

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34068.1145 (Present)

Minutes had turned into hours and those hours had followed one another for much longer than anyone would have cared for without any signs of the away team being detected. What made matters worse was the growing civil unrest spreading on KZINTI ALPHA. If something did not change soon, nothing that would come to happen would be able to change the fate of that world and its inhabitants.

"FOUND THEM!" Misaki exclaimed. "Transferring temporal coordinates to the helm."

"It is about time, no pun intended," Commander Valentine said as she quickly rushed to her station. "The one historical record is vague. It is a report from one of the workers who participated in the construction of the royal palace. According to his account, two Kzinti women were observed running back to the foundations of the royal palace where they joined three others who were already there. One of them is described as being very big, tall furless and possessing blue skin."

"That has to be Elan," Miss Satori said, her heart racing with joy.

"We have an appointment to keep," Captain Iverson noted as she shifted in her seat. "RED ALERT! All hands stand by for temporal jump. Helm, get us in as close as possible. Once there beam the away team back. As soon as they are on board, take the BASTET back to the present. Hopefully, we can arrive in time to stop the collapse of that civilization.

Setting: ELAS, Construction Site
Stardate: 34068.1150 (Past)

"Where have you been?" Krayss furiously demanded of Sheetora as she ran back to regroup with the others.

"There is no time for that," Merevaik interjected. 'The workers are on their way back. have you completed everything that you needed to do?"

"Yes," the Oltharian confirmed. "The only thing missing are the engravings on the walls and doors as well as adding the genetic identity of Sheetora to the unlocking mechanism of the Vault."

"I do not believe there is time for either to be done now," the Kzinti woman stated, and before anyone could comment the four visitors from another time were engulfed in shimmering lights before vanishing as if they had never been there. "Safe journey and good luck."

Setting: USS BASTET, Transporter Room 2
Stardate: 34068.1155 (Present)

"Welcome back," Commander Valentine said as the transporter sequence ended. "Were you successful?"

"No!" Krayss bellowed. "You have to send us back."

"I am afraid that this is impossible," the First Officer pointed out. "The Dimensional Drive sequence that will take the BASTET back to the present is already underway. We had to hurry if there was any hope of us arriving in time to stop the civil unrest currently happening on KZINTI ALPHA before it is too late.

"We did not have time to do everything required," the Oltharian added.

"I am truly sorry Elan, but there is nothing we can do at this time. The BASTET is heading back to the present, that you completed what you believed was necessary or not. The Captain wanted to make sure that your possible tampering with the timeline was kept to an absolute minimum."

"NO!" The Grand Duke exclaimed with rage. "We cannot fail like this, not after being so close to undoing all that took place."

"You could not change anything that happened which lead you to be here on the BASTET," Counselor Dima explained. "Changing anything in that regard, meaning stopping the attack against the royal family from taking place, would mean that you were never saved by A'Janni or that he never made a Priority Black request that brought us to you. It would also mean that you were never part of an away team that found itself thrown back in time where you would have been able to alter the timeline. What happened had to happen."

"We already went through all that Counselor," the Queen said as she tried to comfort the Grand Duke, but instead of accepting her efforts he pushed her away, channeling his anger on the person he saw as being the one responsible for their failure.

"Grand Duke Krayss," Doctor Andersson said with as much authority as she could muster. "I have no idea what you all went through, but let me assure you that I will not allow you or anyone else to let their feelings injure anyone else. Now, you all need to report to the Medical Bay so that I can perform a quick examination. You can either come of your own free will or I can have you sedated and dragged back to the Infirmary. Do I make myself perfectly clear?"

"Perfectly Doctor," the Caitian said before tapping his friend the Grand Duke on the shoulder making him understand that it would be best if he kept his feelings in check and complied with the orders of the Chief Medical Officer.

Setting: USS BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34068.1210 (Present)

Doctor Andersson proceeded with the medical examination as quickly as she could; taking just enough time to be certain that everyone was in good physical health. Normally, after what they had endured, the Counselor would need to speak to each one individually but as ironic as it was, time for them was in short supply.

"How are they?" Captain Iverson inquired. The Commanding Officer of the USS BASTET had come down to check on the members of the away team personally.

"Physically they are fine," Sofia reported. "A few additional bruises, a slight indication of dehydration, but nothing that would sideline them. They are as healthy as they were when they beamed down to the planet in the present before being yanked back into the past."

"Emotionally speaking though," Nicole jumped in with, "they appear to be in a state of heightened emotional distress which I fear might interfere with their ability to make rational decisions."

"There is nothing rational about any of this," Krayss blasted from one of the medical beds. "We did everything we could to stop the royal bloodline from vanishing into oblivion and because of *her*, we failed." All eyes followed the accusing finger of the Kzinti man leading to Gemma who was still presenting herself as the murdered Queen Sheetora.

"Captain," the Oltharian began as he slid off the bed and presented himself to the woman in command with all of the respect her rank and position warranted. "I am truly sorry for the outburst, but please understand that we have been working very hard to make sure that both the timeline remained intact and that the Royal bloodline of KZINTI ALPHA could carry on. As there is little time to fully explain everything, I am respectfully requesting that you allow us four to return to the planet."

"Are you out of your mind?" Sarena gasped in disbelief. "You have just admitted to putting things in place that could alter the way events were meant to naturally unfold, and you expect us to just allow you to go down and make that happen?"

"Please Captain," Sheetora said adding her pleas to those of Elan. "You have to allow us to try. The odds of our succeeding are minuscule to begin with and are growing smaller with each passing second."

Going against Elan was an easy thing to do for Valentine, the First officer not knowing him all that well, but refusing Gemma proved to be more difficult. Without saying a word, the Commander turned and looked at the Captain, her decision would stand as the final one, no matter what anyone else believed or said.

"Captain," it was the turn of Miss Satori to offer her take on the situation, not that she had been asked to. "I understand that you do not know Elan or me all that well, which may in some way invalidate our opinions, but please hear me out. Elan is not a man prone to rash judgements, and he has always considered the well being of the greater good over that of his own. I have witnessed this first-hand on many occasions. Captain Morningstar came to respect his opinion and I for one would trust him with the lives of an entire civilization without hesitation. If he says there is an urgent need for them to return to KZINTI ALPHA then I believe him and am ready to do whatever is required to help."

"I appreciate your candor but it is not that simple," Selene said. The captain understood the need for action, she also believed that the members of the away team were likely the only one able to solve the current situation on the planet, but alas nothing was ever that simple. "I cannot..."

"Captain, if I may add just one more thing. We have established that Elan and the other members of the away team were meant to go back in time. We know this because Merevaik told me of this happening before it actually happened. Do you believe that the universe is so chaotic that it would go through all of this trouble to not have them fulfill a destiny that was set in time before any of you were even born?"

"As I was going to say," Iverson continued. "I cannot in good conscience stop you from doing what was clearly meant to happen even before our arrival here. So, permission to return to KZINTI ALPHA is granted."

"Thank you, Captain," Elan said, giving the woman a deep respectful bow as only a member of his imposing race could.

"You four have to be careful down there," Doctor Andersson warned. "Traveling through time can be very taxing, especially when you are not used to it"

"And that is if you ever get used to it," Nicole added as a personal observation.

"You might feel dizzy or even weak," the Doctor continued. "So please, be careful."

"We will Healer, thank you for your concerns."

Setting: ELAS, Construction Site
Stardate: 34068.1225 (Past)

The explanation provided by Merevaik; that of what had been seen was nothing more than playful benevolent spirits, might not have been completely accepted by the workers, but it proved sufficient to have them put aside what they saw to instead focus on their work. As they proceeded with what they were here to do, once they were reassured that the radiation leak they were expecting never happened, the Kzinti woman fetched one of the tools the Oltharian had used during his stay.

She smiled as she looked down at the small instrument, her grin growing even larger as she began to carve one of the symbols into the walls.

"What are you doing?" One of the workers demanded in horror.

"Those spirits bestowed upon me signs and markings meant to protect this palace and all those who would come to stand within. Would you rather I ignored their counsel and leave these walls untouched, or do you believe the King and Queen will agree that these symbols are meant to show future generation the destiny we are all helping to create here today?"

Setting: ELAS. Palace Lower Levels
Stardate: 34068.1225 (Present)

Even with the away team beaming as close to the Vault as they could, the chaos that reigned throughout the Palace made it exceptionally difficult for the away team to reach this particular location. Once they did though, Elan was quick to notice that the inscriptions he had seen the first time around were still here, this despite them not having been made by the time they left.

The Oltharian gently ran his fingers on the symbols, remembering Merevaik asking to see them while he was taking a break from his work. "She must have copied them from those I wrote in the dust on the floor of the room where the power generator was."

"Well, it means that the timeline is intact, at least as far as we can see," A'Janni said just as the sound of phaser rifles filled the air quickly followed by bolts of energy flying close to the heads of the members of the away team.

"That may be great, but it will not help us get the Vault opened," the Grand Duke remarked. "You get the video feeds ready while I find a way to get to the door.

"The force field generators we installed in the walls will not be able to hold them back for long," the Special Security Envoy stated. "We had to keep the power signature as low as possible to avoid them being detected during the last couple of centuries."

"I only need a few seconds to make it to the panel," Krayss said. "Just be ready to transmit the whole thing to the rest of the planet and beyond. We have to make sure everyone sees and understands that the Royal bloodline is not dead."

"The transmitter will be ready," Elan said.

"We will delay them as much as we can should the force field prove insufficient to accomplish the task," A'Janni said as he produced two battle staves from a small recessed opening at the base of the wall. Clearly, those basic and undetectable weapons had been placed there for this very purpose two hundred or so years ago.

"All right," the Grand Duke said readying himself. "Let us..." As he stood a bolt from one of the energy riffles struck Krayss causing him to spin around giving an easy target to the half dozen or more bolts that quickly followed sending the Kzinti crashing to the ground with a gaping hole where his chest should have been

"NOOOOOO!" Sheetora screamed. "This cannot end this way."

"We only have one option left," A'Janni said. "We need you to address the population as their Queen and show them that you are alive."

"Without the Vault being opened, her statement will not carry the needed weight or have the impact we needed it to have," Elan said. "It is more likely that her simply making that statement will lead to more chaos as the forces against the royal family will claim that this is a desperate attempt of the supporters of a dead family to hold onto whatever power they can."

"Maybe so," the Caitian agreed, "but we have to try."

"Trigger the force field!" Sheetora ordered waiting just long enough before she began her mad dash towards the vault.

Setting: ELAS, Construction Site
Stardate: 34068.1230 (Past)

Merevaik looked at the panel meant to confirm the genetic identity of whoever would present itself here wishing to open the massive door, accessing the secrets that would be kept behind. There had been no time to add the genetic identity of the time-traveling woman who claimed to be a future Queen, but somehow Merevaik believed that they would find a way to achieve their goal. After all, she also believed that the universe was not so chaotic that it would go through all of this trouble to not have them fulfill a destiny that saw them travel back in time.

"Good luck," Merevaik said as she caressed the edges of the panel with her fingers. "Be the Queen your people need you to be."

Setting: ELAS. Palace Lower Levels
Stardate: 34068.1230 (Present)

As soon as Sheetora reached the door, she turned and was given a 'go-ahead' sign from Elan meaning that the transmission was working. Looking as confident as she could and ignoring the battle that raged at the other end of the corridor, the Queen addressed her people.

Setting: USS BASTET, Bridge
Stardate: 34068.1231

"Captain, there is a high power transmission emanating from the royal palace," Misaki reported. "It does not seem to be directed to anyone or anywhere in particular, but it is powerful enough to be picked up by everyone in this system."

"On the main viewer," Captain Iverson ordered.

[/\] To the people of the KZINTI star system, [/\] Sheetora said, her royal image filling the screen. [/\] I am Sheetora, Queen of KZINTI ALPHA. As I am sure many of you have heard, my home was viciously attacked by a group of cowards who wished to cast our world into eternal darkness. It took me a long time and the help of some very dear friends for me to be here and tell you that they have failed. The bloodline of the Royal family has not been extinguished, and the prosperity of our world will continue on, despite the attack that saw so many of our people die. As your Queen, I vowed to protect our world, its people and our shared future, and today I am here to keep that promise. [/\]

Everyone watched with bated breath as the Queen reached back and placed her hand on the panel meant to confirm her genetic identity, and to the surprise of everyone, the door behind the woman unlocked before opening to reveal several small stasis pods. To those who did not know the royal family, those contained inside appeared to be nothing more than little children, but to anyone living on KZINTI ALPHA, they recognized those children as the children of the Queen.

"They did it," Valentine said, finding herself on the edge of tears. "They actually did it."

The image switched to show a large number of forces loyal to the royal family, their opponents having lost their will to fight after what they had just witnessed. As the image returned to show the Queen though, they saw a group of dark-furred Kzinti warriors forcing their way closer despite the valiant efforts of the Oltharian and Caitian standing in their way. As the battle raged on right next to her, Sheetora continued her address to her people.

[/\] Since our arrival onto this world and until the stars all grow dark, the people of KZINTI ALPHA will know prosperity and have a ruler of worthy blood to lead them into the future. [/\]

Just before the image ended, everyone who was watching saw a blade strike the Queen, sending her crashing down to the floor before the attacked was himself taken down.

"Bridge to Doctor Andersson, medical emergency. Stand by to receive at least one severely injured member of the away team."

Setting: USS BASTET, Observation Lounge
Stardate: 34070.1600

It had been two days since the transmission was made and viewed by an entire solar system. Two days since the forces loyal to the royal family regained control of their world and two days since the population of KZINTI ALPHA was saddened by the news of the official death of Queen Sheetora and Grand Duke Krayss. Her children had survived the massacre, although no one knew exactly how, but given all that had taken place, people were content to simply accept that the Darkness had been pushed back and the royal family would continue on.

Elan stood by the large window, gazing upon the planet he had visited both in the past and present. "You did great," Amber said hugging the arm of the giant who was towering over her. "You saved all of the children."

"They were lucky that the generator was able to provide enough power to accomplish the transport and stasis," the Oltharian said. "I was not sure it would work at all. It could have shorted out and left all of them to fall prey to their attackers."

"I knew it would work," Amber said. "It had to."

"I just wished that we could have saved them all."

"You could not," Captain Iverson said as she walked in on the couple. "You did more than anyone thought possible. The Kings and Queen needed to die in order to drive the military to act the way they did. By saving the children, you might just have saved an entire civilization."

"Thank you, Captain," Elan said offering the Commanding Officer a low and respectful bow.

"If we may ask, how is Gemma?" Amber inquired.

"She is still in the Infirmary," Selene said. "Her nanites made quick work of the injury caused by the blade, an injury that would have most certainly killed a Kzinti, but luckily for us, she was more than she appeared to be. Doctor Andersson and Counselor Dima are tending to her as we speak."

"What about A'Janni?" Elan asked. "How is he taking the death of the Queen and Grand Duke?"

"To be honest, I am not entirely certain. For some reason, he has decided to stay by the bedside of Gemma even though she no longer appears as Sheetora but has reverted to her usual self."

"What are your plans for us?" Amber asked.

"That is why I am here," Selene replied. "Now that the provisional government is firmly in place, keeping an eye on the planet, its people and the heir to the throne, we can leave. We should be able to bring you both back to OLTHAR PRIME within a couple of days."

"Thank you, Captain," Elan offered.

"I believe it is us that how you thanks for everything you have done. The people of KZINTI ALPHA will never know how much you have helped them. Your assistance in shaping their world will remain unknown to future generations."

The Oltharian smiled as she looked down at the woman still holding his arm. "I had a good teacher.

Setting: USS BASTET, Infirmary
Stardate: 34070.1700

"Why is he still here?" Sofia asked, looking at the Caitian who had not moved from the bedside of the ILO.

"Where do you want me to start?" Nicole fired back with. "He is feeling guilty for the death of Sheetora. He is intrigued by Gemma and her ability to become someone else. With the Kings and Queen both dead; the provisional government of KZINTI ALPHA did not want anyone from the old guards to be near the heir, so A'Janni is theoretically out of a job. Koniki will likely reassign him somewhere else once we return home, but in the meantime being here is the only thing giving him purpose."

"Well I hope we get back soon," Sofia huffed. "Let's face it; my Infirmary is no place for a pet feline."

Setting: USS BASTET, Captain's Ready Room
Stardate: 34070.1800

[/\] I have read your reports on the mission to KZINTI ALPHA, [/\] Admiral Koniki said to the woman sitting at her desk. [/\] Please extend my congratulations to your crew for a job well done. [/\]

"What about the part where we discovered that the uprising against the Royal family was instigated by the Lokustaar?" Valentine asked, making her presence known.

[/\] According to your own report, Commander, and that of your Chief Science Officer, Lieutenant Mitshiba, the 'creature of darkness' was cornered and dealt with by the local authorities. I believe there is not much more for me to say. They might have started this mess, but you help put an end to it before it went too far. Mission accomplished. [/\]

"I believe what my First officer was trying to say is that she is concerned that there might be more Lokustaar out there. Once their fleet found itself on the run, many individual Lokustaar seem to have taken it upon themselves to continue the spreading of chaos and destruction," Captain Iverson said.

[/\] As long as they are out there, we will be here fighting back. Again, it is that simple, at least as far as I see things. Is that a problem for you? [/\]

"No Admiral, but the BASTET does have several key posts still vacant. A Chief of Security is one of the most noticeable ones."

[/\] Tell you what, get back to the barn and take some time off. I might have a solution for you on that particular matter but I need to check a few things first. If all goes well, you will have a Chief of Security before the start of the next year. [/\]

"Thank you, Admiral," Selene said. "See you soon, Iverson out."

"Do you think he means A'Janni?"

"He does possess the knowledge and training, not to mention that he already knows of the BASTET and its ability to travel through time," the Captain explained. "He may not be a perfect choice, but I cannot claim that he is the worst one either. We will just have to wait and see what the Admiral decides. In the meantime, I just want to get back home and not have to worry about anything for a few days... maybe even a few months, what do you think?"

"I am not sure how the crew will take being inactive for that long," Sarena said grinning. "It cannot hurt to try though.

Jessica Solarik

Captain Selene Fiona Iverson [Access Character BIO for Selene Iverson]
Commanding Officer


Lieutenant Commander Maya [Access Character BIO for Maya]
Chief Science Officer

"To see the world in a grain of sand,
and a heaven in a wild flower.
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour."
- William Blake (British, 1757-1827)

Make a free website with Yola